Friday, November 21, 2008

It's Friday!!!!!!!


I don't have anything new and beady to report. I've spent a lot of time this week cleaning beads, but that's not really exciting or blog-worthy.

I WILL say that I waited a long time to get my new bead cleaning tool thingy and I went and bought a dremmel to use with it and I am NOT impressed. I wish I could say I was... but I'm not. :(

I'm going to have to go back over all the beads I've cleaned again. ugh. My old method of just using the mandrel to clean little beads seems to be JUST as effective as this expensive tool. I wish it wasn't so.... but that is MY finding (please don't try to debate with me about it... if you're having good luck with the tool. Hooray! I'm happy for you!!!!)

In other beady news... well, there isn't any... so we're moving onto non-beady things...

Cake Wrecks!!!!

I hope this ends your week with a laugh. I found it thanks to my wonderfully amusing cousin Emilie (who writes a fantastic epicurean blog called ifagioli - I have no idea what that means, so don't ask me... just check it out sometime.)

ANYWAYS... thanks to Emilie, I laughed my butt off at these "cake wrecks" today!!! My favorite ones are all the mis-spelled ones or misinterpreted directions by cake-decorators. Hooray for Cake Wrecks!!!

so... happy Friday to you all!!!

no music
same old coffee...

no tiny blah..... oh, I guess that was tiny... oh well!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Quickie catch-up blog posting..

Life has been, for the most part, busy and happy. Beads have been made, but nothing huge and wonderful as I had hoped. I did make one really interesting bead on Saturday... it was a 2 hour project and just as I was finishing I heard that awful "crack" sound that makes a beadmaker's heart sink.

I went ahead and finished the bead because I wanted to see how it looked finished, but was disappointed, both because it cracked and in the way the colors reacted with each other (you don't always know until you try though).

I spent the rest of my beadmaking time making little simple beads. It seems that my hands are shaking again. It's SO weird how I now that I know what causes it... it's SO obvious. I wonder why I didn't figure it out long ago. At least I know now. It's nothing I can remedy, but at least I know why it happens. HOPEFULLY it will subside soon and I can get back to what I love.

In the meantime, it's little basic beads for me. It does mean that I can't participate fully in my own workshop which is a total bummer... but that's just the way it is. There is SO much more I'd love to say here, but I'll save it for conversations with friends (sorry, dear readers who aren't my in-person friends... you'll just have to be out of the loop on this one).

tiny blah blah blah...

coffee - same old same old. I'm in a rut. Need to change things up, but haven't found a drink I like as much as my Cinnamon dolce Latte

music - listening to the radio today - Dave FM. Right now it's Gavin____ Gwen's husband. It's a beautiful song, but I can't remember his name or the name of the song! LOL

Friday, November 14, 2008

FINALLY Friday!!!!

We made it! (well, close to, anyways!!)

As I was driving into work this morning, I was thinking (something I do in the car quite a lot). For me, driving down Lake Forest (a tree-lined back road) always puts me deep into thought and I have no idea why! Some of my best ideas/epiphany moments occur when I'm on that road. Weird, huh? I don't think I have the same sorts of ideas on other roads... wonder why.

SO... I'm driving down Lake Forest and I'm thinking about my online class and life. I'm reading a book that's making me a bit teary at its ending (which I'm sort of avoiding because I don't feel a happy ending coming on) and it's too long to go into, but it's sort of about the twists and turns of life. The story is about a man who time travels and his relationship with his wife. He knows his future, but can't change it and at this point of the book, he's sort of wallowing in a bit of self-pity, knowing what’s ahead. Not that I might not do the same thing... not sure.

Since I was thinking about the book and then thinking about my workshop, I sort of had some "hmmmm...." thoughts about beads and life.

The saying "when life hands you lemons make lemonade" seems kind of flippant to me when people are going through real hardships, but it is sort of an attitude that I encourage in my creativity workshops... making the most of the things you create that didn't quite turn out the way you'd planned... embracing the mistakes for the opportunities they can offer... doors they can open to explore new ideas.

How does this fit with life??? Well, I was thinking of the last 10 years of my life and all the things that have happened in my life that were NOT things that I wanted to happen... but how I dealt with those situations was up to me.

No one ASKS for a fire... no one wants a diagnosis or a failed relationship... but bad things happen in life and where you go from there is up to you. I had the choice of how to react in all these situations - sitting and feeling sorry for myself, blaming God, myself (I’m bad at that) or others for the places I'd ended up or just saying... ok, what do I do now???? Looking back, I’m really proud of how I’ve handled things. I’m DEFINITELY not perfect, so that’s not what I’m saying, but looking back over the last 10 years, given what I’ve been dealt… I can say that for the most part, I’ve weathered the storms and come out a stronger person because of them.

In beadmaking, it’s sometimes really hard for me to look at my work without that inner critic telling me everything that’s wrong about a piece. But for some reason, in my life, I don’t have that same pessimistic attitude. That’s not to say I’m not hard on myself (because I am) and that I don’t get sad… I’m real… I hurt and I don’t mend easily, BUT I try not to live in that place… even though, in some of these situations that would have been very easy to do.

SO, as I teach people to see the possibilities in every piece they create… I need to remember to use that same attitude myself more often. It’s easier to do in the context of the class where it’s SUPPOSED to be an exploration than it is in the studio when you have something you wanted to make and it doesn’t go the way you want. BUT I need to remember to apply my attitude towards life to the studio as well.

I’ll be in my studio this weekend and I plan to make some REAL beads this time… not just the assigned ones for my class, but some real artistic expressions of things that I’ve been mentally brewing for a while now. I have no idea if I’ll be successful or not, but it’s time to try… and not to beat myself up if they don’t go as planned… embrace the possibilities of the positive that can come from imperfection…. and the hope of something wonderful on the other side.

tiny blah blah blah...

coffee - Cinnamon Dolce Latte

music - more of the playlist "Chick Flick or Should Be" Right now it's playing John Waite "Missing You". For some reason, that song always reminds me of driving down the highway when I was in High School. I'm not sure why that's the memory that's triggered, but I'm glad that's what I associate with it. I know people who associate it with a person... I don't. OOH! And now it's playing Sade's "Maureen" which is a song I LOVE!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

It's STRESS FREE THURSDAY!!!!!!!! WOO HOO!!!!!!!!!
Good Morning World!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
(and I DO mean world...)
  • United States
  • United Kingdom
  • Denmark
  • Canada
  • Australia
  • South Africa
  • Switzerland
  • Italy
  • Germany
  • New Zealand
  • Singapore
  • Turkey
  • Unknown (scary!)
  • Netherlands
  • Hong Kong
  • France
  • Hungary
  • Israel
  • China
  • Ireland
  • Russia
  • Belgium

TOO CRAZY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Someone or someones in all these countries read my blog. That just blows my mind!!! The internet is such a cool cool thing. I was talking yesterday to someone about my online class and how I have people in 6 different countries participating. That's crazy isn't it???

In what other workshop could people be around the globe and STILL in the same class??!! I think it's super cool that I'm uniting the world (ok... I'm being silly here, I KNOW I am not personally responsible for any form of world peace. LOL... I'm just saying it's cool that people geographically far away can participate in something together all at the same time that I'm responsible for.) Very cool indeed.

That said... my workshop needs tweaking. <--- that reminds me of a scene from You've Got Mail when Tom Hanks tells Meg Ryan that he's been away because he has a project that needs "tweaking" (when he's figured out it's her-his rival that he's been e-mailing and he's trying to figure out how to win her over even though she hates him) ANYWAYS, I digress... I have 4 groups of people participating in the workshop. Each group has 10-12 members. I have a waiting list of 17 people waiting to start when I'm ready for them.

My challenge is that not ALL the members of the other groups are participating. All for different reasons... some people have busy schedules and can't do their assignments every week... some have just not participated, but I don't know why... some have family things that have come up unexpectedly. I have to figure out how to deal with this. The classes NEED a good number of people participating to make it work. Right now I've got about 1/3 of the people in each group doing their work regularly and a few others in each group doing something sporadically. (I do have one group where 75%ish are participating every week... I THINK it's because a lot of them already know each other, so there's sort of an accountability factor there)

No one is paying for the workshop and I'm sure that's part of it. We tend to commit to things that we have attached monetary value to... sort of like going to the gym for me. I really do love going to the gym, but a lot of times I get busy and it's easy to put that on the back burner. If I've PAID the trainer, however, I always show up... even if my schedule is crazy busy. I didn't PLAN on charging for this workshop, but should I consider it... just to get people committed??? I hope to charge for it someday... but I wasn't going to yet because I wanted the positive word-of-mouth advertising from those who participated in it with these groups first.

And do I EVER want to charge for it anyways??? If I do it online and I can get it fairly self-sufficient... shouldn't I just be proud that I'm helping people develop creatively and let that be its own reward??? I am truly proud that I help people find those "aha" moments every now and then. What if I could be partially responsible for a whole group of beadmakers descending on bead-world with such wonderfully unique work that it really mixed things up???!!

ok... I'm talking too much today. I'm just thinking 'out loud" and have to figure out how to "tweak" the classes... put people together that are actually participating. But how to do that without offending those who aren't??? hmmmmm.... more to think on.

tiny blah blah blah...

coffee - yummy cinnamon dolce latte made by Omar the genius barista

music - my ipod playlist "Chick Flick Songs (or should be)" Right now it's Kelly Clarkson's "The Trouble With Love" which IS from a Chick Flick. Love Actually which is one of my very very favorite movies. It's just about the time of year that they play it on TV since it has a holiday theme. YAY!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Happy Wednesday World!

I am ONE step closer to world bloggy domination!!! I have added more countries to my map! woo hoo!!! (hello to all you people out there having your coffee with me that I don't know. And hello to those of you who I do know too)

I'm in a good mood today and it's not just because of my readership boom. I'm just in an overall good mood which is nice for a change. I hesitate anymore to say that because I always feel like I jinx things... but I'm a logical person and know that I DON'T... it just seems that way sometimes.

ANYWAYS... I'm in a good mood. A productive mood. A creative mood.

I'm sure someone will try to "step on my buzz" today because that's just how life goes sometimes, but for now, I'm feeling very upbeat.

I didn't get to make beads last night as I had hoped, but I'm hoping to have more time to devote to it this weekend. I'm working on organizing crafty stuff in the meantime.... that I can do in a more stop/start manner than I can beadmaking.

I've always had one room in my house that was specifically my studio, but I have other pursuits that aren't necessarily bead-oriented that need some space too and I'm working on making a new place for that... which is a cool thing. Little by little it's happening. I'll keep you posted.... about my organizational progress AND my beadmaking.

Hi to my frequent Atlanta-area readers and hi to Israel!!!!! WOW! isn't that crazy??? That I have people reading this in Israel???

tiny blah blah blah....

Coffee - Cinnamon Dolce Latte (do they have Starbucks in Israel??? For some reason I think they might!)

Music - Corrinne Bailey Rae. I just love her music. It's so upbeat and perfect for a day like today. I wish she would release a new album though!!!!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Scattered Tuesday

I feel like my thoughts are all over the place today, so I'll make this short (hopefully) and just do some quickie bullet point sort of things...

  • found my camera charger! YAY! Need to upload all the good pictures to facebook and snapfish to get prints for scrapbooking (this only SORT OF has to do with beads. There are a few beady pictures, but most of them are family/friends. I'm really happy having my camera back again!)

  • Need to scrapbook the pictures I already have! (this has nothing to do with beads, but I'm writing it here anyways)

  • Need to make some weekend plans (for beadmaking - hey, I'm TRYING to stay on topic! I might be making other plans too though)

  • Need to start making Christmas presents (this IS beady, but i'm not going to give specifics because gift-recipient people read this blog sometimes)
  • Need to make a hair appointment (I've cancelled 4 times due to "stuff" so she's probably getting a little miffed! - again, nothing to do with beads)

  • Need to reorganize the groups in the online workshop. One group is thriving, one group fizzling... needs tweaking. It's all experimental, so I guess that's bound to happen. (OOH! actually on topic again!)
ok... that's all the "need tos" that I'm going to post for today, lest I feel overwhelmed.

tiny blah blah blah...

coffee - for the first time in 3 days, I'm actually drinking a Cinnamon Dolce latte. 2 days in a row I ordered a drink and they got it wrong AND I didn't notice until I was driving down the road. ARGH! Made me very unhappy. I miss Omar when I have to go to other Starbucks!

music - Today is a Bob Seeger day. I'm not sure why. Maybe it's the weather. Maybe it's reminiscing about high school. Not sure, but I love "Against The Wind" this time of year.

books - I haven't had this one in a while, but I'm reading a really cool book, so I thought I'd include the info here. I'm reading The Time Traveler's Wife which is REALLY interesting and intriguing. Hard to describe, but it's one of those books that i have NO idea how its going to end, but I'm enjoying it as I go along, not racing for the finish like i sometimes do.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Hello world! It's Wednesday!!!!!

WOW! This week has flown by... because it's' just been an abby-normal one.

I took a few vacation days (which meant vacation from the blog too) and had fun with friends/family/people in line at the polls.

I don't have anything real beady to report, so this is a short one. Things are still very topsy turvy in personal-life-land and that has made it hard to focus on anything else. My online classes are rolling along and have gotten a lot more self-sufficient, so that's a good thing.

I did find a little time on Saturday to make beads. Not anything huge or wonderful, but it was good to just sit down at the torch and make a bead or two. I have GOT to get focused soon and go at it from a more professional stance. We'll see how that goes.

In very happy news... I found my camera!!!!!!! Not my bead camera. I've had it in the studio the whole time, but my fun camera that I carry all the time to take pictures of the kids and friends, etc. I hadn't seen it since the end of summer and it was really bumming me out! I had a couple of days worth of pictures on the memory card that I would have been sad to have lost, BUT it was more the feeling of not being able to "capture moments" when I wanted to.

I had last seen it at a pool party and was worried that it had somehow been lost at the pool (even though I'd looked there over and over). For some unexplainable reason, I put it into a drawer in the house... one that I never look in! I have NO idea why... but that's where I found it. At least I found it!!! YAY!!!

Now, I've just got to figure out which outlet I last had the charger plugged into and I'm good to go!! YAY!!!

tiny blah blah blah...

coffee - a not very good cinnamon dolce latte. I think they put peppermint syrup instead of cinnamon! It just does NOT taste right!

music - James Taylor. I need to decompress a bit