Tuesday, August 28, 2012

My Studio

First, my suggestion is to make a cup of tea.  After all, it is raining.  When is it better to sip hot, enticing, aromatic tea than when a tropical storm like Isaac is sending Lots of water your way?  My favorite is called Happy tea.  I found it on Amazon.com and liked both the name and the color of the can.  The tea itself is a warm orange, although it does not taste like oranges, but lemons and peaches.  For the truly decadent, slice a fresh peach and add two slices into the hot water. YUM.  Well, after all, I am a Georgia girl.  Even better,  peaches and honey. 

Add a couple of friends:



...and it makes for one sweet cup of tea.   There is one more baby, Amelia, but she is camera shy and for the most part hides under the bed.   Almond has been with us for 16 wonderful years and one can see the wisdom in this stone-cold killers' eyes.  She weighs less than 5 pounds, but has been seen dragging home 5 foot long black snakes, large squirrels and many voles.  Let's just say she likes to hunt.  Oyster found us on vacation in Florida.  She had almost no hair and we could see all of her bones.  She ran over, sat on my feet and well, the rest is history.  You can always find her to my left on the desk, and she has a wonderful skill in always, no matter how she turns, or twists or rolls....she never ever misses the chance to hit the CAPS LOCK key.  REALLY. 

Some of you have asked to see pictures of my studio.  Finally unpacked and mostly re-organized, I tried to capture the essence of the space. 

This is my fire station.   I can solder, anneal, pickle, polish and generally make an unsightly mess on this old folding table.  I found a great old Peach crate for keeping files and hammers.  And yes, that is a drill press too, although for things of late, I find it more efficient to use my hand drill.

My drawing table has been flattened out and holds beads and assemblage parts that I am working on. I have storage containers, a mini stereo and a small television in the background.  This table was the hardest to pack and un-pack!  I like to keep lots of things loose on the top or in those small white dishes.  Those are actually sushi saucers for wasabi and soy sauce.  They make great bead holders, and the crisp white means I can see the colors very clearly.  I purchased these years ago at Pier One Imports.  I love getting inspired there.  I find all sorts of unusual objects that I use in unusual ways.  They even have a Pinterest page that has DIY, Fan ideas and ways to show off your ideas.  Can you say U-NEE-QU?   

And to the left of this table, I not so subtly swiped, is my husband's water color table which has lots of thin drawers down the middle, and a top that opens on sliders.  The top can go from 4 feet wide to 6 feet wide...and there are bead boxes ALL over it.

This is the Awesome work table that my new-to-woodworking-husband made this spring. It is measured and cut to just my height.  It is wonderful for for polishing and drilling with my hand piece.   The table top is very heavy which is great for pounding, forming and the oil rubbed finish is very smooth.  I love it!  Here is where I keep my punches, my vise, my Sizzix machine, cutter and dapping tools, and my hand piece. 

Here is another of my husband's brilliant ideas.  He took an old scrap of 2 X 4, trimmed and shaped to fit under the handles of my pliers collection.  He sanded it and lightly stained it too.   I'm not the only creative one here and it shows.

Well, my tea is gone, the cats are asleep and the old clock is chiming...time to get back to work!  I hope you enjoy your rainy day too.

Monday, August 27, 2012

The Beading Gem's Journal

The Beading Gem's Journal

Check out the banner give a way on Pearl's site. If you want a great highlight for the fall shows, you might get one free!  

Monday, August 13, 2012

One Day follows another

Okay.  Yes, we moved to this cute little house. Yes, all but two of the boxes that we couldn't fit are in storage, and those two are blocking half the hall to the back door.  Now I have been MIA for some time, failing to even get emails off in a timely fashion.  The days are melding in a blur of manual labor, sandwiches and showers.  Lots of showers!

This is what the kitchen here looked like on June 29th, before we did anything, or moved in.

This is what it looked like last week on Wednesday night about 8 pm when I had been scrubbing the floors for 3 hours.  The floors are actually white tile with white grout.  It has become an obsession to get them clean enough.  We sanded, re-painted the cabinets inside and out and put on all new hardware.  Yes, the cabinet doors are here and ready to go up, but I think too much time has past and now we forget that we have them or need them!  The dishwasher space is a little tight and a little crooked, so it always looks like that....For Now. 

This is what the kitchen looked like on Friday just after 7:30 am when the delivery truck came early!

Unable to get pretty much anywhere in the house on Friday, I went outside.  This was the driveway on Friday afternoon after I had decided to address a little rain water flooding the front yard sort of problem.  Those red bricks used to only go to the basil plant in the ceramic planter. What I found, is they actually went all the way to the street.  While digging them out, I also added a french drain.  We have been getting frog chockers for 4 days and I was getting a little tired of the sand and dirt washing out the walkway and ending up in the house, requiring Lots of vacuuming.  Once I had the ditch digging accomplished, I called and made a reservation for new gravel....13 TONS of it!

The cabinets are not due to be installed until later this week, so over the weekend, we addressed another drainage issue, started a new front walk and my sweet husband found the Energy to even add plants!

They go the length of the fence; hostas and nandina.

This morning was cool and wonderful.  I rose early, made lunch for my husband and waited....and then, there it was.  The sound of the Gravel Truck.  Well, it is one thing to see these on the highways and by-ways of America.  IN your driveway is a Whole 'Nuther Thing!

The spreader truck came and the nice guy did His Rock Thing.  Of course, nothing goes quite to plan around here, and I discovered that while we wanted rock to be spread to the front of the chimney, The Truck could not fit past the dogwood.   So, I got this!

He did a great job on the driveway parts he could get to, B U T.  There was this Mound.  No less than 4 feet high.  Let's see it from the side view.

Ah!  That is a 6 foot handle shovel propped on the side of that mini mountain!  So, at 9 am, with of course Nothing To Do Today......I started spreading rocks.  At 4:07 pm I stopped.  The mounds are gone. The cars are parked back in the driveway.  My right arm is a little numb and I have a swollen elbow, but let me tell you, if there were a merit badge for rock farming, it was won today!

And as Rhett said to Scarlett, "you've been working in the fields! Those are not the hands of a Lady!"  I actually wore out my suede gloves!

Confirmed. Tomorrow the cabinet people come.  To whit, Never a Dull Moment!

Words of Wisdom

One of the saddest lessons of history is this:
If we have been bamboozled long enough,
We tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle.
We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth.
The Bamboozle has captured us,
It’s simply too painful to acknowledge,
Even to ourselves,
That we have been so credulous.
Carl Sagan.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012


The moving has finally ceased in all but minor ways and I am finding my creative way back to balance. Camera batteries are on the charger to begin recording the changes, the before and afters.

Things which did not fare so well; the copier.  So, I've just installed a new one and am waiting with bated breath the see if it will work on wireless. After 2.5 hours, I am ready to move on.  I am past the days when I want computers to devour my time, gnawing at the minutes and hours waiting for installation prompts and those cute service bars, loading, as slow as ever.  Or has my patience worn away with the years?

I have but one picture to post, the only thing my hands have been able to accomplish since the third week of June when packing in earnest commenced.

Why this?  Because during the move I lost all 10 pair of eye glasses over and over and over and over again.  When I finally laid my hands on a pair that drifted out from under the car seat when my husband braked a little too fast, it became a dedicated challenge to make it so I could not lose those, thereby being able to actually look for the others.

This is the measure of normalcy.  When I have glasses all over the house and a pair around my neck, but never, ever, permanently on my face!

So how do you keep up with vision challenges?