Monday, August 29, 2011

I have been ranting.

The mozzarella cheese we made with a kit from  We had another lovely Caprese salad with that cheese, some peppery fresh basil and vine-ripened tomatoes.  We are very lucky to have a Latino grocery, as well as an Asian grocery, both a few blocks from our house.

We also just signed up for this terrific organic produce delivery service here in Phoenix.  Their produce is amazing.  It is mostly local and always organic.  This week's favorite was an artichoke that tasted absolutely flowery, and the last box contained some pluots that Mark just had to make into a tasty cobbler.

The point of all this ranting is that we have been changing our lives so much.  We have essentially quit drinking, except for a particularly special bottle of wine from time to time.  We are eating vegetarian as often as we eat meat or poultry.  We are eating fish and fruit more than ever before, and we swim as often as possible in the summer.  All this is to try to halt our declining health, and just to have fun.  I have lost over 40 lbs.  Mark's beer gut is gone.  I have a lot to lose yet, but I feel good about it.  Who knew that pushing 60 years old could be so fun?

The best result is that I have clarified a few things about my artistic style.  The essence was always there, but it was beneath the surface somehow.  So, my pieces didn't always make me pleased and satisfied.  But, there was a little niggling thought in the back of my head about what I was after, and it finally came into focus for me.  Stay tuned for the upcoming results of this artistic clarity of vision.  I am slow because of my health challenges, but I'm the turtle.  I can win my own race.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Surgery cancelled!

Well, the much-anticipated operation is off for now pending further tests.  Seems the anesthesiologist wants clearance from my pulmonologist who wants an echocardiogram scheduled for Tuesday next.   Geez, I'm worn out from typing about it.  On the one hand, I am kinda giddy like a child who got out of a punishment.  On the other hand, it is rapidly becoming the sword of Damocles over my weary little head.

On the happy side of things, I am making great progress on the Bead Soup Blog Party things.  I got this crazy idea at three in the morning one night, when I seem to do my best thinking.  Stay tuned for the big reveal on that. Should be great fun, along with all the other participants!

Today, I am reborn, and grateful to be alive!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Tomorrow is S-day.

Not that s-word!  You have an evil mind!  I am having my scary surgery tomorrow, and I just want it to be over already!  I will post again whenever I am up to it.  Not that I have a gazillion followers or anything, but for my few online buddies, I'll keep you posted.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Working on my BSBP item.

Which is maybe turning into several items because Pat's components are so interesting.

In my other life, I'm preparing for a scary surgery on a big ol' hernia in my tummy, but the scary part is the ventilator.  Because of my lung disease, it will be harder for me to get off of it following surgery, and this will be painful, too.  Not much fun, I'm afraid, but a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do.  So I may be away for a week or so, starting Friday.  But, when I come back, I'll be repaired!  Wish me luck and pray or think good thoughts for me if you can.  All good energy will be highly appreciated!

Thursday, August 18, 2011


Yesterday, we came home from an exhausting doctor's visit, the breathing tests kill me, and our power was out.  So, no oxygen concentrator, and it was 106 in the shade.  So, what to do?  The pool, of course, but Mark had to jump the fence to get to the back door, since the chain was on the front door and the electric garage door obviously wasn't working!  So, he made the big jump, bent his glasses all to hell (I think he landed on them), and bruised his hands and feet. He is a tenderfoot, too, his poor feet!

Anyway, we finally got into the house, and it was so hot we immediately put on the suits and went on out, determined to stay until the power came back on.  The problem with the plan was that the waiting period was predicted to be over two more hours.  Now, I can breathe well in the pool, for whatever reason, and that was ok without the air, but over two hours in the sun was kinda scary with my pale Germanic skin.  Mark, of course, is descended from sturdy Cajuns, and he turns a gorgeous deep brown and never has a problem except on the top of his sweet balding head.

Fortunately, within about an hour, our usual pool-time duration, the air conditioner groaned to money-eating life.  The oxygen concentrator was restored, and it was safe again to go inside.

Today was another day of setting up doctors' visits and other depressing stuff. Mark was sore of feet and hands.   Sooooo, another trip to the pool, and when we came in, Mark's ouchies were a little better from the nice swim.  And then, my gorgeous beads for the Bead Soup Blog Party had arrived from my party partner, Pat Haight, and they are just delightful!  Another potentially yucky day saved by a big ol' swimming pool and some small and not-so-small beads, links, clasps and doo-dads!  Thanks, Pat!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Here we go again!

The Whole Lotta Whimsy Sunday Social Circle has put another bracelet up for auction on eBay. This one is only going to be there for 5 days, and it is a steal right now at only a $51 bid level for all those unique charm designs and all the silver!  Please bid if you love this, it's for the victims of the Joplin tornado. Thanks!  (as Shannon steps down, ever so carefully, from her soapbox.)  Here's the link for your buying pleasure!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


Well here it is!  This is the necklace I made with my Mostly Metal Challenge kit.  

I tried to make the sari fabric into fabric beads, but the acrylic medium I used made them very dark.  So, I used them anyway, but put the original fabric into the tiny picture frame at the bottom.  I used mostly metal, hence the wire wrapping and chains, and perked it up with the netted pink seed bead bezel for the cab, and the little netted seed bead halo for the bicone, as well as the assorted lampwork beads from my stash.  I stuck to the color scheme from the sari fabric, even though the beads turned dark, because I loved it, pink, green, burgundy, black and brass.  My unique item was the little pagoda chain thing that I snuck into the design twice.  Loved this challenge!  Hope to do more!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Ok, get ready!

The Bead Soup Blog Party Pack is all ready and will be mailed tomorrow to my party partner, Pat Haight whose adorable blog is  If that isn't the cutest blog name!  Here is the mysterious mixed up picture of the Party Pack.

And tomorrow, the Mostly Metal Challenge Entry.  Check back in the morning for the finished project!

I had the:

Antique Brass Romantic Kit
1 antique brass 24mm hollow back floral heart pendant
2 antique brass 24mm hollow back leaf charms
1 antique brass 18mm "Oui" round charm
4 antique brass 8mm filigree bead caps
16-18" of Sari silk ribbon (color varies)
One pink 19mm pearlized vintage cabochon
6-7 glass beads

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

So excited about the Bead Soup Blog Party!

 I just love swaps, and it is a great way to get to know new people.  Since I haven't sold my work previously. I hope that this swap, Michelle Mach's Mostly Metal Challenge, (how's that for great alliteration?), as well as participating in Tonya Davidson's Whole Lotta Whimsy Sunday Social Circle group will give me that little push into selling.  I have been so occupied with health problems, I have somewhat lost sight of my creative goals.  I am, however, starting to get my muse on.  So, time will tell, but I have a good feeling!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Happy Friday!

Came in from the pool a while ago, grabbed a shower and nestled into the lazyboy to check e-mail.  Found a note from Lori Anderson saying she would be getting the party partners aligned, hopefully today.  So, I went to her site to remember exactly what a good partier should be doing.  I found a button to link to her party blog.  Now my HTML knowledge would fit into a thimble with room left over, but I decided to try to make a button and link it all by myself without annoying Lori any further (there was a little drama about my MacAffee  not allowing me to link to her signup form, which she, very graciously, resolved).  So, I tried it a few times and got a couple of rude messages, and then, all of a sudden the sun dawned, angels sang and it worked!  Today is a good  day!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Charity Day!

Today, the Whole Lotta Whimsy Sunday Social Circle, of which I am a proud member, put their first collaborative charm bracelet up for bids.  There are six total bracelets, and a lot of members did a lot of work on these, particularly Brooke Durham, Tracey Edwards and Wanaree Tanner, (I hope I didn't forget any of the core group) and everyone who made charms!  The funds collected from these sales will go to the victims of the Joplin tornado.

Anyhoo, here is the link so you can all check out the first amazing bracelet.