Friday, December 30, 2011
So right now, I am in a holiday downswing. I've visited with all my family, gave out all the presents I hurried to finish or buy, and now its just a couple days till the new year. I'm just a little disappointed its over. Time moves too swiftly, leaving little room to savor a moment.
All in all, it was an enjoyable time. I spent a nice holiday with my family, and then the second part was spend with my Sweetheart's family. As every family knows, it is hard to coordinate a large family gathering, and I've been lucky to be able to see everyone almost every year.
The year is coming to an end, and I will be spending some time over the next few days taking stock and revisiting lessons learned. I will be planning and evaluating what's important and what isn't. I will be taking what I need with me and leaving behind what I don't.
I hope 2012 brings opportunities. I feel like 2011 has been a bit unbalanced. Its either been more work and little play, or no work and no play. I know that just because the calendar has been reset it does not mean the balance has been restored. I wish I could say that "new year" means all the ongoing unpleasant crap can't cross the timeline into 2012 with me. The journey will continue. I remain hopeful though, the balance will be restored. This year, I expect great things.
Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Sunday, November 27, 2011
So visit the shop and get ready for the big sale :)
Thursday, November 24, 2011
A day for family, friends, memories, good times, big meals, and more. This year, my family had Thanksgiving on Monday. It was the only day that we could all get together without work conflicts. Then today, I gathered for Thanksgiving part two: Turkeys Revenge. Well, more like Thanksgiving lunch, hot turkey sandwiches. It was delicious. :) Soon we will be gathering again with more family for some T-Day dinner of some sort.
I just wanted to take a minute to say how thankful I am. I'm thankful for my Sweetheart, my family, my friends, my health, my home. I'm thankful for the food I eat, the clean water I have, the heat in the winter and air in the summer. I'm thankful for my car and my job. I'm thankful for the ability to express myself creatively.
Hope for those of you celebrating have a Happy Thanksgiving.
Sunday, November 13, 2011
Thursday, November 3, 2011
I recently got a new phone. Its a smart phone. I feel like I've finally caught up with the rest of the world. So, I'm trying out this new ability to blog from anywhere. They will most likely be mini posts, but that's still pretty nifty.
Tonight I'm finishing up work on a guinea pig charm. Its behind on progress, but hopefully I will be able to finish it tonight. Not making excuses, but life happens and well... here I am.
Lately, I've also been going thru some sort of creativity lull. I don't know what the issue is, but I've been very lazy about creating, and creating is what I am.
Since I last updated, my sweetheart and I, but mostly him, have made a boat load of apple pies. Apparently a half a bushel of apples equals about 10 monster sized pies. Delicious ones. ;)
About a couple months ago, a new "baby" came into my life. I plan on sharing her with you all very soon. I'm very excited to introduce her!
This year has just blown by so quickly. November is already off and rolling. I was hoping to do more shows this year, but I'm not seeing it as an option right now. Unless I can pull it together and get some work done, build up mystock, and then maybe I can find a show its not too late to get into. We'll see.
As for now, its time to get back to work :)
Monday, October 3, 2011
So now, I think its a little late to really try and stock up. I could attempt it, but I'm just not sure I could really catch up. I'm afraid that I wont be able to do any shows before Halloween. I might just have to let it go this year and look into the following holiday seasons. We'll see.
... I started to write this on Saturday, but its Monday now ...
Today was a great day. My Sweetheart and I went apple picking. If there is one thing I have to do every year, its apple picking. The weather today was gorgeous. It was breezy, clear blue sky, no rain, 68 degrees beautiful. We had cider and cinnamon doughnuts, and did some wine tasting. Went home with a ton of apples and bunch of other things, including our 4 pound jar of honey. Today was a great day. :)
This week my goal is to focus. So many things have been distracting me. Too many things. Whats worse is that even with so many distractions, I can't even get those things done. I should make a list. I should write out things I want to have taken care of by Friday this week. Maybe I will do that tonight while I lay in bed. Contemplate what needs to get done. Its as if the tasks are piling up in my brain and causing lockup.
I hope to have some pictures soon. If I can get my act together. :) Keep your fingers crossed.
Tuesday, September 13, 2011
Today was the last day our Borders had its doors open. Its meeting its end, much like the final chapter of a book. I can't help but feel a little sad tonight. Its hard to understand sometimes how a large company can meet its end like this. I know why Borders is, there are many reasons and I could list them, but I wont. It still baffles me though for a few moments every now and then. Over 11,000 people are losing their jobs all over the country. Not to forget the thousands before this when the company closed 1/3 of their stores a few months ago trying to get it together and save the business. So many jobs lost. Its a major disappointment.
My sweetheart brought home a few books with him tonight. Everything good was pretty much gone a few weeks ago. You could maybe find something good here and there if you picked thru enough stuff. Most likely though, it wasn't something you were looking for in the first place. A handful of good ones managed to squeak by.
Beyond my obvious reasons for sadness, I'm angry. Yeah, I'm pretty irritated. We have been applying for jobs all over the place. Aside from the lack of them in general, I have a separate gripe. And that is, personality tests. I hate them. I think they are a ridiculous waste. We haven't encountered many of them yet, but we did just fill one out a few days ago. It was so ridiculous. They say to fill it out how you feel, and not to put too much thought into it, or answer how they think you want them to answer. After 30 minutes it took to fill it out, a few days later we receive the "thanks but no thanks" email. Whatever happened to interviews? First interview, second interview, talking face to face, getting to know someone. Most times you could fill out an app, and hand in a resume, and that was all it took. I just don't see how it can be determined what a person is like based on what seems like the same 15 questions asked 5 different ways over the course of 12 pages. Infuriating. I was hired into Borders by word of mouth mainly. A friend dropped my name, I filled out a paper application, got called for an interview, then a second interview, and was hired. Shortly after my hire, they changed their process to computer apps and personality/psych tests. Honestly, I think it was as hit and miss for employee hires as much as paper apps. Maybe more miss than hit in fact. There were a small handful of good employees that came from the computer apps, but then there were also, quite a few people that were terrible workers, unmotivated, lazy, and just belligerent. So much for the personality tests.
Anyway, I haven't been a very busy bee for the shop lately. My job has been taking a lot of my energy. I also need to clean my work space. Its a big cluttered. I might have a few inches to work on at the moment. I really wanted to have a bunch of Halloween charms made by now. I've really fallen behind. However, I don't have any craft shows lined up (not even sure if it will be a possibility to do any right now). I still wanted to make some. Not that there isn't time to get a few new ones cranked out. I also have been kicking around a new idea that I really want to get moving on. I've just been hesitating on it. I need to promise myself to get this space clean so I can do some work. :p I did manage to finish a new skirt over the weekend. Its plain black. I will have to post some pictures later. :)
Until then, here's a shot of my wild flowers. :)
Thursday, September 8, 2011
Monday, August 1, 2011
Sunday, July 31, 2011
Friday, July 29, 2011
"When in doubt, I find that retracing my steps to be a wise place to begin..." ~ Albus Dumbledore
I have been finishing up a custom guinea pig charm, and the dog charm is still being worked on and perfected. Its almost the end of July, I haven't had a chance to start any holiday charms, which means I've fallen behind. I've also had this idea rolling around in my head for a few weeks now, and I would like to get started on it. Not sure what the world will think about it when its unveiled, but I think that it will be beautiful. I'm excited to get started, but uncontrollable forces may hinder my efforts to truck along on with it. More on that in a bit.
Today I stabbed myself with a rake. Yes. A rake. There are raccoons in my neighborhood. I love them, but they like to pull the siding back on the garage to climb in and hide. I normally wouldn't care, and really I still don't mind, but today was hot, muggy, and I had just taken a shower before work. I tried to pop the panels back in with the rake, and ended up dropping it and it stabbed me right in the thigh. So there is a scratch and a bruise AND a welt. Fun. :P
A week ago today, I bit a great big hole in my cheek by my molars while eating dinner. I thought it would just turn into a canker sore, and then heal as usual. I was wrong. It ended up becoming very painful. It must have also become infected or something because my lymph node, cheek and jaw on that side of my face are swollen. More swollen a few days ago, less swollen today, but my jaw aches, and cheek hurts inside and out. OH! And my ear hurts too, so the whole right side of my face. Tons of fun! :P
Now, I'm sure you are all asking, "Jen, why haven't you just gone to the doctors???" Well, I have no insurance. I haven't had any for a few years now. Its okay. I have paid out of pocket for some things, but this time, well, aside from not really being in the budget, I feel like I can wait it out. But, a week later now, I might be eating my words soon if things don't change dramatically for the better.
The last few weeks of work have been wicked busy. I've been working late a lot of nights. It doesn't bother me. I've just been tired, more tired than usual. Its not like I don't get enough sleep though. However, a friend of mine, has brought it to my attention that I might have an iron deficiency. So, I have decided to start taking a multivitamin. I know I could use it. I don't exactly eat right all the time.
Still working on balancing work with my shop. Its been hard. I hope the vitamins help boost my energy, and I will be able to catch back up on things.
Besides work and illness keeping me from my shop there has also been car troubles. My little car just had new brakes, new rotors, new wipers, and an oil change and new oil filter all put on. Things were looking better for it. Well, then I discovered I had the beginnings of a flat the other day. I took it to the tire shop and it turns out that the tire was probably the same tire it rolled out of the factory with back in 1999/98. So, now it has one new tire. There will be another new one in a couple months hopefully. The flat tire was so old, they no longer make them, in fact, the company doesn't exist anymore. As for the other tires? Also discontinued. But, it now has one nice new one. :) Hooray for more car expenses. Can you feel my sarcasm? ;)
Speaking of expenses. I decided to replace my old camera with a new one. My old Canon only had 4 measly MP. Now my new Canon has 14 MP! Its incredible! :) I decided its now or never, and bit the bullet. I picked it up over a week ago. I had a gift card from my brother and that helped take the edge off. I justified this purchase in a pretty reasonable way, unlike when I justify things so I don't feel guilty when I buy them. I use this camera for all my shop stuff. My old camera's batteries no longer held a charge, and rather than investing in an old cam, I decided to just upgrade. The old Canon is about 7ish years old. Pretty long life in camera years. I'd have to say that's about 92 in people years. It's been a good friend and companion. Documenting many many good times. I'm sure its predecessor will be a worthy replacement. :)
Yes, I did see Harry Potter 7.2. Yes, it was awesome. Yes, I am sad its over. Yes, I did cry. I wont go into much more than that. I don't want to spoil anything for anyone. :)
And now, unfortunately I will be ending this on a sad note. If you haven't yet heard, and I'm pretty sure you would have to be living under a rock to not know, and if you are under said rock, you probably don't have internet connection, but what do I know. Anyway, if you haven't heard yet, Borders is closing. I bring this up because once upon a time, I worked at Borders for about 5 years. Borders is where I met my Sweetheart. Borders is where my Sweetheart works currently. Its sad news that they are liquidating. It breaks my heart to see them go. Not only because we are staring down the barrel of the unemployment shotgun, but because I feel like books are disappearing.
I love books. I have many. I cant imagine a world without them. I'm not saying that there will never be books, but there is something to be loved about holding a brand new book in your hands, being the first to open its pages, to bend its binding. The smell of a new book can't be replicated with e-readers. The feeling of accomplishment when I see how many pages I've passed, while marking my place for next time. The absolute excitement of the Harry Potter release nights will always stay with me. A memory I cherish. It wouldn't exist if it weren't for the actual physical books. I have many technical craft books, and I like being able to flip between pages referencing what I need. I don't see myself using an ebook for that. On my shelf, wedged between children's picture books, is a book I was given by my first grade teacher when she retired. Its Ed Emberly's Drawing book of Animals. I have a copy of a Tale of Two Cities that was my Grandmother's when she was in school, inside which she has written her profession of love of a certain actor. :)
I could go on and on. I love technology as much as the next person. I don't think that ebooks and e-readers are useless. I can see where they can be nice and convenient, but books, real, actual, ink on paper books, will always have a special place in my heart.
Tuesday, June 28, 2011
Last time I wrote I was shopping for a dress, and making a dog charm. Well, I'm still working on that dog charm. Its been on the back burner, but I've started working again. Painting is going slowly, but its not a race.
My future brother in laws wedding happened a few weeks ago now. It was pretty, and classy, and a lot of fun. Its always nice seeing the family. I ended up with a saucy red dress, and a pair of high heels that gave me the worst toe cramps in my life. I think I might have to burn them. Whoever thought that high heels were a good idea should be beaten. Or forced to wear them. Something. It was terrible. Plus, I ended up not wearing them at one point, but I wish I would have had some flats or something. Especially since a lot of rose petals ended up on the dance floor, and my feet turned purple! :) I think they were purple for a couple days. It was a lot of fun though.
I've been working at my new job for a few weeks now. Its really interesting, and my bosses and coworkers are really nice. I'm feeling pretty lucky about that. There is a lot to learn, and I'm hoping to absorb it all like a big ol' brain sponge. Its going to take some hard work to get into the swing and balance work and the shop. I just need to organize and focus. Its been a struggle, but I'm not giving up or anything. I'm just going to take it one day at a time.
My garden is starting to grow pretty good. Little flowers are poking their heads up and blooming. So far I have only seen the pansies. :) Yesterday I found a little millipede, a fuzzy white caterpillar, and a green bug I've never seen before. I researched it, and it looks like it was a green tree cricket. Like a baby one though.
I recently finished a personal pendant. It was my first time working with silver metal clay, and it turned out great. I'm really pleased with it. :)
I've been working on a new idea for the shop. Something from a long while ago, something that only a vague memory of remains. Little bits suddenly came back to me though, and now it needs to be revisited. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised when it finally comes together.
With all of these interesting things going on, I would love to toss in some pictures for you to see what I see, but that brings me to my final issue. My camera is old. Well, by electronic standards, its a dinosaur. It sucks too, because I love this camera. Its been a great little companion and has captured so many memories for me. Its coming to be time to replace my little buddy though. The batteries no longer hold a charge, and its not worth investing in new ones. So, I've been researching, and I think I have found a worthy replacement for my old Canon PowerShot S410 with its tiny 4 megapixels. Hopefully if things go well, I will have my new baby soon.
*fingers crossed* :)
Monday, May 23, 2011
Besides that there has been other things going on in my life that are taking time away from my creative endeavors. I've been cleaning up the yard with my sweetheart. We planted some flower seeds. I think something has already started to sprout. Unless those are weeds...
I started a new job after a long search for additional employment. I had the interview a couple weeks ago, and then they brought me in for a trial period. A couple days ago, they told me they were going to keep me on. Its exciting and stressful. New things like this usually are for me.
Mother's Day and my Mom's birthday have both come and gone now. I wasn't sure what to get her for those, but I ended up finding some things that were pretty cool. Me and my sweetheart took her out to dinner, and that was nice.
I've been out clothes shopping a few times looking for new stuff for work and a dress for a wedding in June. Being a girl, and going clothes shopping, doesn't necessarily mean that shopping is fun and rainbows and lollypops. I pretty much loath looking for pants and dresses. Most pants don't fit me right. Dresses are a whole other ball of wax. I might just have to break down and get pants then make alterations myself. :/ What a pain. Plus, I cant stand spending money on clothes. :P
This weekend went by way too fast. Hopefully I can find a rhythm between work and my shop and play. The last few weeks I've neglected the shop, and the dog charm. I need to get back to working on that as soon as I can. Which, should be tomorrow.
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
I have probably thanked my friends about a half a million times, but I really cant thank them enough. I don't know what I would have done without them. They spent a lot of their free time to fix her, and it means the world to me. Thank-you so so much. :)
Also, it looks like I'm not alone. I've been perusing the internet and found that many more people have fallen to the same virus as me. Multiple times even. I don't know how long it will be before the issue has been taken care of, but I'm certainly not hitting dA anytime soon. What an incredible pain that was.
Until then, I am thinking of bringing back my flickr account for my "portfolio". I'm not sure it will get as much traffic or exposure as dA does sometimes. I just feel like I should have somewhere to display all my various creations. Kicking it around. If anyone has any suggestions for a better place as a "portfolio" let me know :)
I recently sewed some sweet little snuggly sacks for my friend for her guinea pigs.
|Snuggly sack with rad racing stripe.|
|Snuggly sack with lime green and funky red fabric.|
|Snuggly sack with adorable owls and colorful mushrooms.|
|Miss Shadow staying snuggly.|
|Mr. Gus keeping an eye out and Mr. Chester resting his head.|
I've been working on a new mala for the shop. It features gray wood, nuts, and green lace stone beads. It has earthy calm feeling to it. I will be finishing up the tassel in dark & medium green colors. I should have it photographed and listed in the shop soon.
Until then, :)
Saturday, April 23, 2011
This horrible virus loaded in, and took over my internet and killed my avira. I couldn't do anything. As if my decrepit laptop wasn't destroyed enough with its busted hinges, hit or miss fans, slow processor, and laundry list of other issues, now I have this virus to contend with. So my friend was kind enough to offer to help me reinstall XP on my craptop. When we sat down to back up some files, the power kept shorting out. This was new to me. Turns out, the wires connecting to the power source had been exposed and started to fray. Pinching the cord helped keep the power flowing, but the exposed wires were getting too hot to touch. I tried using one of the clamps I use to prop up my screen, but I could smell burning plastic, and that's when we noticed that the wires were glowing. Hooray for fire hazards. :P Apparently it was too much stress for it to travel.
I decided that it was finally time to take old blue off life support and let her go. Now she is sitting over in the corner in her old bag collecting dust.
Now, because it was finally over with I decided to replace her with a previously owned laptop. She is pretty silver and white. A billion times faster. A nice new wide screen compared to blues square screen. Way more hard drive space. Windows 7. She's incredible. I love her.
Everything was going so well. I was on a cloud. Until I got hit with the same horrible virus (with a new name). For the last week now I have been struggling to get this thing under control. I wasn't sure where it came from or how I got it. After some research though, I have decided that it might be linked to DeviantArt. I'm not blaming them... yet, because I don't understand the intricacies of horrible annoying viruses, and how they can just suddenly upload to my HD, disable my internet and antivirus, rendering me to an angry raging blob on my couch. I still think the two are connected though. I've also been reading claims that if I had a premium paid for account with DA that I wouldn't be susceptible to these virus invasions. Which kind of makes me think, "Why would they say that? Is it a ploy to get me to pay for their account?", and then I put on my conspiracy theorist hat and think "Did DA have something to do with this virus?" My mind goes on and on from there, but as I keep reading posts and blogs, it turns out I'm not alone on this thought path.
I've scanned and safe moded and recovered and restored and rebooted and cryed and screamed and swore and cursed. None of it is working. Tonight, I wipe and reinstall Win7, and start all over. My plan of action after that, is I am going to be abandoning DA for a while. It breaks my heart because I love checking my favorite artists updates, but it has to be done for now. Maybe I'll be able to do back some day.
I hope this fresh start works. I hope it hasn't affected my external HD. *fingers crossed*
Sunday, April 17, 2011
I wasn't sure how to approach a kitty charm at first. If I were to try and sculpt the entire cat, it could lose detail if I tried to keep it the same size as my other charms. I didn't want to make it too big, then it might look awkward or uncomfortable to wear. So, I decided to go with a bust.
Cuddles is a dark black kitty with hints of dark brown in her fur. Her eyes are a lime green and she has a big furry mane.
I wanted to show a little of the process of this charm. Unfortunately, I cannot find my photos of the charm unpainted. I will show you the photos of her painted and then after varnishing though. :)
In the end, she turned out pretty well. :) If anyone is interested in ordering a custom kitty charm, just send me a message at firstname.lastname@example.org. I haven't started officially offering them in the shop yet, but they will be the same cost as a custom guinea pig charm.
I should have a post coming up about the latest custom orders I've been working on. Until then, :)
Saturday, March 19, 2011
After a few weeks of work they were finished and ready. I was pretty pleased with how they all turned out. :) They looked just as I had pictured them finished, and when each pair walked down the aisle, a tear came to my eye. I'm sure some would also say, "Lots of people cry at weddings...", but 1. I wasn't crying, my eyes just welled up a little ;) (my mascara wasn't waterproof and I forgot tissues, no crying allowed. I refuse to have raccoon eyes) and 2. Yeah, I was happy to see my creations, and I was happy to see my friends get married. :) Lol, so both. Go with me on this.
I waited to post these pictures because they were a surprise for the wedding party. :) Here they are though now, in all their awesomeness.
|Bride and Groom Pins|
|Best Man Pin and Maid of Honor Pendant|
|Groomsman Pin and Bridesmaid Pendant|
|Groomsman Pin and Bridesmaid Pendant|
|Groomsman Pin and Bridesmaid Pendant|
Sunday, January 23, 2011
First, over here at Lila Tueller Designs. There is a nifty giveaway with a big stack of beautiful fabric for a grand prize and 2 smaller bundles of purty fabric to two lucky first place winners.
|Lila Tueller Designs|
|Lori Anderson Pretty Things|
So, if you like to sew or if you like to work with metal, or both, you should definitely go check out these two giveaways. :)
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
It was a busy few months. Most of these were gifts for the holidays. I really enjoyed making each one. Once they were finished, and were ready to ship, it was really hard to part with them because they were all so cute and tiny. :) I'm really happy with how they turned out.