Monday, June 16, 2008

The butterfly necklace.

It's finished! I added the antennae and chain. Then I antiqued the entire piece. I think antiquing the silver makes the stones stand out a little bit more.

If I was to make another one, I would antique the wire first. Dipping the entire piece in liver of sulphur made me a little nervous; plus, it's hard to get into some of the nooks and crannies that I wanted to reach with the polishing cloth.

All in all I'm very happy with it.

I'll be away for a little while. I'm heading out to San Francisco for work on Wednesday. I'll see you when I get back.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Happy Father's Day, Mom.

Dear Mom,

Thank you for being both a mother and father to us all these years. We know it wasn't easy and we appreciate it more now that we have kids of our own.

We think of you sometimes late at night when we have a spouse to help us put a frightened child back to bed, clean up after a sick child, change the sheets on a soiled bed, or whatever it may be. We remember how many times you were up with us in the night and then went to work the next morning. Now we understand how you tired you must have been.

And we think of you when we play with our kids. We remember all the times you played baseball with us, walked along railroad tracks, rode bikes, played hopscotch, board games, and Uno. And we are glad we can do these things with our children, too.

When we watch you with our children we think about how lucky they are to know you. And how lucky we are to have you as a mom... and a dad.


Tina, Toby, and Randy

Friday, June 13, 2008

Bead & Button Show purchase from Elemental Adormnents.

I love lilacs.

They bring back fond memories of childhood. My mom had a large lilac bush and it was always exciting to cut some of the flowers and bring them indoors.

Christi Anderson of Elemental Adornments cast these silver lilacs from the flowers themselves.

If only they smelled as good as the real thing.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Bead & Button Show purchase from Dora Schubert.

I recently admired Dora Schubert's black and white beads that she posted on her blog. Knowing she would be at the show, I kept I an eye out for her booth.

It took me a while to decide and I was almost distracted by all the other beautiful, colorful beads.

But I persevered.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Bead & Button Show purchase from Green Girl Studios.

This year I bought less in volume and concentrated more on small pieces of art. I have a lot of kits and a lot of beads, so I tried to stay away from buying any more right now. Because some of the pieces are so special, I decided to show them to you in separate posts.

The first one I'll share with you is by Cynthia Thornton of Green Girl Studios. Theirs was one of the first booths we visited because I hoped she was bringing some of her polymer clay sculpture pendants. And because their booth is always one of my favorites.

I brought home this barn owl sculpture. It's set in a small bezel and covered with resin. Look at the detail!

If it flips over while I'm wearing it, even the back is decorated.

My mom was also drawn in by the miniature sculptures.

This is the back view of her pendant.

We had a chance to chat a little bit with Cynthia and Andrew. They're both very nice and it was fun to meet them. I'm looking forward to visiting their booth next year.

Saturday, June 7, 2008


Bead & Button on Thursday was a great time. It was a long day, though. I feel like I'm still recovering! My mom and I both had a class from 8-3. Mine was the Woven Mariposa with Barb Switzer.

I was surprised by how far along in the project I was at the end. It was all set for me to start adding the beads. I worked on that yesterday. I used rhodolite, moonstone, and crystals.

It's not finished yet. I still have to add the antennae and chain. It also needs to be antiqued. I'll show it to you again when it's all finished.

Barb was a great instructor and I enjoyed the class immensely. She also has classes on Beaducation that you can take from home.

I wish I could see all the finished butterflies from class.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

The temperamental artist.

For some time now I have been asking N. to paint some flowers for me. In the middle of this past winter he agreed to make me a flower painting. I was so happy. We went and bought some canvases. He asked for two in case he made a mistake.

As soon as we arrived home he got to work. I left him alone to paint whatever flowers he wanted to paint. When he told me he was done painting, I went to take a look and I found this painting of money.

He said he didn't really want to paint flowers at that time, but he did want to paint a picture of money for his room.

Later that same day he said he was ready to paint some flowers. He wanted a white background and asked me to paint it, which I did. But perhaps he was not as ready as I'd hoped. This painting says, "I've got to paint something...anything! get her off my back."

Uh-huh. I guess it's abstract flowers? He said he wasn't in the mood to paint flowers after all and wanted to do this instead. When I said I'd hoped for flowers, he told me he's an artist and he can't paint things he's not in the mood to paint.

Right. That has been hanging on the wall ever since, which would be fine with me if I felt he'd put effort into it. Though, it does make me smile when I think of him being the temperamental artist.

So this past weekend we had some time alone together while Mark ran in a marathon (he ran in South Bend, IN and completed the race in 3:44!), N. said he was in the mood to paint. Off we went to Michaels to buy a 16 x 20 canvas. This time he had a plan: he wanted yellow flowers and a red background. He asked me to paint the background because it was too boring for him to do.

I love it and it looks even better in person.

Season liked it to. She was very helpful while I was trying to get a photo. It was very gloomy here yesteday, which is why I wasn't taking a photo of it hanging on the wall.

I highly recommend giving your kids a canvas to paint. N. is so proud of his "real artwork" hanging in our house. He feels very grown up being able to paint on a canvas that artists use.

Tomorrow is Bead & Button Show day. Next time I hope to share my bead class project... and additions to my bead stash!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Popcorn party.

I think I mentioned before that we are having some theme nights, like craft night, movie night, and reading night. N. has decided that we need to have popcorn parties on Sunday afternoons. This involves me making popcorn and all of us watching a movie together while we enjoy our popcorn snack. Hmm. Sounds a lot like movie night to me... :)

This past Sunday I walked into our family room to find this. I hope you can click on the photo to see a larger version.

The circle, made out of individual pieces of paper, spells out "popcorn party." There are three drink menus; one for each of us. Our choices were Silk (soy milk), a smoothie (which I did not order because I didn't feel like making it!) Coke, or water. Show times were at 1:00, 3:08, 4:35, and 6:09 p.m.

Can you believe how much work he put into this? In case you're wondering, the movie that was playing was Cars. That was our only movie choice. And it's a good one.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Etsy Favorite: ES Designs

Today I thought I would share with you one of my most favorite Etsy shops, ES Designs. Elizabeth Scott makes "sterling silver jewelry with simple shapes, hand hammered textures, and botanical images like hydrangea petals, ginkgo leaves, and birch bark."

I recently bought this poppy pod necklace. Love.

And here are some other items I like in her shop.

Also check out Beth's blog where she talks about what she's working on. She also has a very nice tutorial for hoop earrings. I'm planning to give that one a try one of these days.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Learning how to spell.

N. makes a lot of books. A lot. He takes a lot of care in stapling the books together and creating the covers. Sometimes they're storybooks and sometimes they're books for practicing his spelling words.

As I was going through his books this morning I came across this one.

Makes my heart hurt just a little. I wish I could freeze time. Just for a little while.