Tuesday, August 25, 2015

New jewelry

I've been inspired lately to make a couple of new necklaces.  The first is made from a recycled bullet.  It seems as if bullet jewelry is popping up everywhere--magazines, Pinterest, Facebook, etc.  Travis had one used bullet, so I nabbed it and made this.




I used E6000 to affix a Swarovski crystal to the front, and accented the pendant with a pearl.  This gave it a rugged, yet girly, look.  

A few weeks ago I was browsing in my favorite local clothing store, and I came across a long necklace I loved.  I started to buy it, but then decided to make my own, using materials that fit my taste.  It's not an exact copy, but instead I used the necklace I saw as inspiration for my piece.



I love the long length, and the mix of copper beads, silver wire, and brown leather for the chain.  

I wore this to work yesterday and got it hung on my desk, pulling one of the jump rings attaching the copper bead links together loose.  Luckily I had tweezers with me, and set out to make the minor repair just as two new employees came into my office.  Naturally, I fixed the necklace before completing their paperwork--priorities, right?  Besides, they were a few minutes early, and who wouldn't want a free jewelry repair 101 lesson?  (Okay, probably those two men, but they didn't seem  upset!).

I'm currently working on my website.  It's a somewhat slow process--there are so many decisions to be made!  Hopefully soon I'll have it up and running!

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Summer Vacation Recap

It's been a couple of weeks since our family vacation and I wanted to share some of the pics.  Don't worry--this won't be a looong post about every little thing we did.  It was such a great trip, though, that I wanted to share.

First, we stopped in Canton, Ohio to visit the Pro Football Hall of Fame, which was quite possibly the highlight of the trip for Travis.


In case you can't see the pic well enough, Travis' team is the Dallas Cowboys.  We didn't have to physically drag him away from the bust of Troy Aikman, but I was concerned for a while.

Next, we went to Cedar Point amusement park in Sandusky, Ohio.  Being the extremely large chicken I am, I didn't ride any rides, but I did have something incredibly exciting happen to me in the hotel.


Yes, folks, I met Snoopy!  And, yes, I embarrassed Hannah and Katie (especially Katie).

After a couple of days at the park, we headed to Canada, and Niagara Falls.  We spent our first full day in Toronto, taking in the CN Tower and a Blue Jays game.





The CN Tower is intimidating--especially for someone with a phobia of heights (me!), but the views are well worth it!

Niagara Falls is incredible.  This is a view from the American falls from the boat tour.


It was impossible to get a picture of the Horseshoe Falls from the boat because of the force of the mist (which felt much more like a pounding rain!).  However, I did get a few good pics from our hotel room.


When we left Canada to head home, we stopped on the American side of the falls.  There were gorgeous sights from that side, as well.  You can really get close to the Falls!




We also got to see some other sights--Marble Head Lighthouse, Niagara on the Lake, fireworks over the Falls, etc.  It wasn't the most relaxing vacation we've ever taken, but it was definitely one of the best!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Quilt update

Just an update on the baby quilt I mentioned in my last post.  Last night I added the border, and I think it makes the quilt even prettier.


Now, all I have to do is get it ready to be hand quilted on our upcoming vacation.  If that were all I had to do to get ready for the trip it would be nice, but I have lots of packing to do.  I don't even know where to start!  

I also planned to make an entry for this month's Art Bead Scene challenge, but I'm quickly running out of time.  Working full time puts a damper on my craft time!  

I promise to take better pics of the finished quilt.  I had hoped to get a picture with the border added in natural light, but by the time I finished it was dark.  Oh, well.  So much to do, so few daylight hours in the day.

Monday, July 20, 2015

New project

My cousin is expecting her first child in November--a girl--so I decided the little one needed something made just for her.  This is what I'm currently working on (forgive the horrible lighting in the picture).


It's hard to tell, but the quilt top is done in shades of pink and gray.  Now, I just have to add the border and quilt it.  I plan to hand quilt it on the way to Niagara Falls.

Speaking of Niagara Falls...  We're leaving this weekend and I'm incredibly excited!  The girls and I have never been there, and it's been about 20 years since Travis has.  It's a long drive, so we're going to break it up a little by going to the Pro Football Hall of Fame and Cedar Point.  We're also planning to go to a Blue Jays game in Toronto, which should be fun.  

Anyhoo, if I can finish this quilt I'll be way ahead of the game.  Then, I can make her a little pearl bracelet because don't all baby girls need pearls?  

Friday, July 10, 2015

Glass blowing inspiration

Last week our family took a day trip to a fairly (as in 2.5-3 hours away) close amusement park, Dollywood, in Pigeon Forge, TN.  I'm not a huge fan of amusement parks, being the huge chicken I am, but there is an amazing glass shop at the park that I love.  They have the most amazing pieces in there--my favorites are the glass pumpkins.

Anyway, this time I was lucky enough to catch a glass blowing demonstration.  The artist spent a good while making a beautiful glass angel for a family there.  


Unfortunately, when he finished and pulled the mandrel from the top of the angel's head, it cracked.  Everyone gasped, and I can only imagine how disappointed the artist was.  

The demonstration inspired me to head down to the basement and whip up some glass beads.





I turned this pair into some earrings.


I made another bead, but it's currently being turned into a necklace.  Pics will follow--hopefully soon!

Personally, I'm quite thankful it's Friday!  Hope you have a great weekend!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Simplicity

Sometimes things get so crazy between work and family obligations that all I want to do when I get home is crash.  That's fine, except it makes me feel very lazy.  So, I have tried to do a few things to make myself feel a little more productive.

I made this bracelet a couple of weeks ago and I wear it almost daily.


It's so simple--a bangle from Michael's and a couple of charms--but I wear it almost daily.  I've found it's perfect with casual summer tees and dresses.  

I was also inspired by the Jennifer Jangles blog to pick up embroidery.  This is the project I've started.


It's SO relaxing--like coloring with thread.  One of my "happy places" is inside an Airstream, parked in the woods, on a rainy day with nothing to do but curl up inside, listen to the rain, and catch up on my reading.  

In the meantime, I'm trying to survive the last couple days of vacation bible school at church.  I have the teen class.  Wish me luck!


Saturday, May 16, 2015

Art of Awareness Blog Hop

I was excited to read about the Art of Awareness blog hop that Lori Anderson was hosting, and knew immediately I wanted to participate.  After thinking it over, I decided to use anxiety awareness as my topic, and ordered the teal awareness bead from Heather Millican from Swoondimples. I chose the phrase "Just Breathe" for the bead, since that is something I remind myself often.





Most people don't know this, but for about the past 10 years I've struggled with anxiety.   Whenever I feel the symptoms start to creep up on me, I tell myself to "just breathe".  

Anxiety and depression, while common, are often seen as weaknesses.  Many would be very surprised to learn that even those who seem to have everything together--a wonderful family life, a good career, a cheerful personality--suffer silently from the thoughts and feelings that often plague them.  This doesn't mean any of us who deal with anxiety and/or depression are "crazy".  I like to think we're just wired a little differently.  After all, don't we all have something that makes us unique?

I decided to turn my "just breathe" bead (which I adore, by the way) into a bracelet, so that when I start to feel those anxious feelings creep up on me, I can look down and remind myself to step back and try to think calmly about whatever it is that's bothering me.  


This bracelet has some of my favorite colors--brown and the calming teal/blue/green colors that remind me of the ocean. It's often my "happy place" when I feel anxious.

I appreciate the opportunity to participate in this blog hop, and to share a little about myself.  Be sure to check out the rest of the entries!