Wednesday, July 20, 2016

what's on my table? Sales tax!

chainmaile combined with bead stringing? pretty no?  unlike most chainmaile I didn't find it relaxing, stringing between groups of links is a pain! 


My picture today is pretty bracelet, but I doubt I'll make more than the 2 I made.  weaving the wire between the links just so so -- painful!

This design is brought to mind because of the frustration level it entails... just like paying my quarterly sales tax!   OK I'm whining, paying quarterly sales tax in Iowa isn't bad ( don't get me started on other state's though) it's just I"m in the mood to make, have been all week and everything seems to conspire to keep me out of the studio.

Who wants to pay sales tax, wash dishes, be sick etc etc etc...  when you can work on jewelry!!!!

OK, I'll quit whining now... I hope everyone has a fun and relaxing rest of the week.. which I will if I ever make it back up to the studio!

Monday, July 18, 2016

butterfly on leaf

Vintage watch face, vintage clock gear, riveted on hand painted brass leaf .  I know, I should natter on some subject or another... but i'm in shopping mode.. looking for more vintage sparklies to work on my new line of vintage jewelry paired with vintage clock parts.  whee! I'll blog about it soon.... 

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Downtown Farmer's Market this Weekend... woot!

This Sat we will again be out on 4th street, south side about 1/2 way down ( same spot as last time -- in front of the back corner of Dos Rios).  I've been on an earring kick ... the top pair is made from a old beat up and unrepairable flute!   Bottom pair various washers, some vintage.    I promise more words next time, still working on some commissions and new stuff for this week!

Monday, July 11, 2016

This really kewl Bead Store in Denver

One last note on my trip - when we have time we always investigate shopping opportunities for our special interests. This means board games, books, manga, antiques, and for me of course, beads / jewelry supplies.

To be honest the last few years bead stores haven't had the allure they used to hold for me. I just don't use basic beads that much anymore. I still love them, I still adore them and will protect my stash (hoard) with my dying breath, but I really don't need to buy them at this point.  So when I buy at a retail store it's probably a very special one of a kind piece or a time-sensitive purchase. Or it's my desire to support bead shops in general. Even if I don't buy much local stores are important and deserve business's when I can swing it their way.   Shop local folks!!

That said, Denver is a huge city, so I wasn't going to pass up my chance at a bead store - the chances of finding a good one that might have stuff I could actually use ( read that as brass stampings, misc metal findings) was higher.  I researched it thoroughly the night before because we only had time for 1 shop before zipline-ing.   I finally picked Ornamental Beads  (the website doesn't do it justice!! ) because it had great ratings online and the reviews talked about how broad the stock was.  She had thousands of brass stampings and vintage cabs and other lovely stuff.. I had to limit how much I spent, and she even gave me a wholesaler's discount... always appreciated.

So if you are in Denver, and have only 1 shop to go to, this is the one!
droool droool droool! vintage stock porcelain cabs faux 1800's clock face.  I adore these!  Yes some fancy clocks/watches really had painted scenes on them 


I love this pendant! vintage stock, real 20K gold plate

OK, I'll probably sell the amber ones, amber just isn't me really, but the blue-green mixed stones are awesome!  more vintage.. sensing a trend here? 

the whole stash 

Saturday, July 9, 2016

my daughter making friends wherever she goes....

I love this picture.  Look at my baby's face, the sheer bliss on it.

The kitten isn't ours -- her boyfriend's sister got a kitten so my little bit had to check the kitten out.

So of course the kitten is on her head.



Wednesday, July 6, 2016

What's on my desk

So I have this customer who really really like monkeys.  I mean, really deeply adores them.  

So I've been wracking my brain for monkey designs... And finally, finally!! I have a few ideas.  So that's what's on my desk today... It's not just monkey-Ing around like normal.  Heheheheheheh.  

Yeah, I know, I should be ashamed, but I"m not.  Artistic license baby! 

Here's just *some* of my ideas on monkeys.  

Monday, July 4, 2016

My Trip part VII: Denver and the end of the road

The Denver portion of the trip suffered from both rainy days and frankly traffic.  The Traffic in downtown Denver made all 3 of us really glad to live in Des Moines, IA.  I think the traffic was worse than Chicago!!

We did shopping (including a very kewl bead store that had thousands of brass stampings!!!! ) and Zip Lining - in the Rockies!  
On the last day of Denver, before we started the return trip we hit the downtown Aquarium.   Denver's Aquarium is set up like a kids' museum.. this is not a complaint.. it's all very interactive and fun to keep the Kid's interest.  We happen to hit on a day they were doing snorkeling with the fishes, so Jesscera had to do that. They get them in wet suits to do it, something Jesscera had never done before.
Octopuses are such intriguing creatures.

This is Jesscera, swimming with rays and fishes!

I love the colors in this pic!

The outside of the building



That night we spent in Kearney Ne, and the next morning we hit the The Archway, a museum dedicated to how America expended via traveling the North Platte River over the last 150 years approximately.  It's a self guided tour - they gave you wireless headsets so you go at your own pace through the exhibits.  You start by going up an escalator into a mock up of a cover wagon and then walk through the exhibits while the headset "tunes" into each sections' story.

It's a really interesting way to put together exhibits.  if you are out in that Area it's worth the hour or so of your time.

It's built over I-80, and Jerry and I have passed under the Arch several times in the last few years, and wanted to figured it out.

over the highway!

And finally, Home!   We always cheer in the car when we see the sign, cause while we enjoyed the other 9 states we traveled through, there really isn't anyplace like home -

Jerry actually has a saying about this.  Iowa -- great place to live, but you wouldn't want to visit there.  He's being tongue in cheek of course , as Iowa has lots of great sights to offer, but his point is we always want to come home to Iowa.


I hope you enjoyed this glimpse into 2 weeks of my life, and I'm back to jewelry with the next blog.  Everyone have a great 4th!!

Saturday, July 2, 2016

My Trip Part VI: Mesa Verde and sand dunes in Colorado?????

Growing up, I wanted to be archaeologist.  Heck early adulthood I wanted to be an archaeologist.  I actually got to go on a dig in Israel during my college years!  I'm fascinated by history and the stuff that get's left behind.
The drive up the mountain where the cliff dwellings dwell... I caught Jesscera and Jerry while they took pictures as well



So going to visit whole cities that got left behind??

Mesa Verde was the wish list item on the trip for me.  I love all the beautiful scenery we saw on this trip, and the good times we had as a family.. but Mesa Verde was the hi-point for me personally.

700 hundred odd years ago, whole tribes left their cities, which were built in cliffs.  They remained mostly untouched for centuries, known by the local Indians but unknown by the whites until the late 1800's.  Predictably, everyone that heard about them wanted to see them, and I shutter to think how much was lost until it became a national, and PROTECTED, park.

So today, you get to see the cliff dwellings both up close and from look outs, and here are a bunch of very kewl photos from the park

There are over 5000 archaeological sites in the park... just think about that for a minute.

I could have spent longer there, just taking it all in.  I will say it was hot and I'm sad to say, I was having a few breathing issues due to the altitude.  It bothered Jerry just a tinsy bit... Jesscera didn't seem to have any ill effects.

And we had to make it about 250 miles away to South forks for our hotel that night.  Actually we stayed in a vacation cabin in the mountains... very kewl actually.

The 12th we drove to Denver but stopped at the Great Sand Dunes National Park on the way.

Sand Dunes in Colorado??

Yep.

Who knew?  I think I said this alot on the trip.  Actually our good neighbor Susie told us about this one.  Colorado has an amazing diversity of land types!

We made Denver by early evening, and set up in our hotel for our 2 nights in Denver.  This was a Bed and Breakfast in Downtown Denver -- a large, beautiful Victorian house / mansion built in 1889.
This is the "sitting room" of our suite in Denver... 

next: the end of the journey......

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

My Trip part V: Route 66 and the drive to Colorado

Driving to Flagstaff, AZ after the skywalk on June 9th, we stopped at the Roadkill Cafe for supper.  Jerry wasn't gonna pass up the chance to eat at a restaurant called that!! Food pretty decent, and the menu was a hoot.. all the food had roadkill names.  Roadkill is apart of the legendary Route 66 and we bumped into Route 66 Stuff several days of our trip in the AZ and NM areas.  (We spent a lovely afternoon in Williams AZ on the 8th, lots of route 66 stuff to enjoy!) On June 10th, we took another slight detour, this time to see a meteor crater about 45 minutes outside of Flagstaff .

a panoramic photo. I adore being able to make these!!

The museum attached to the site is really nice and informative.. we all enjoyed this stop.  It's considered the best preserved meteor site in the world.

The rest of the 10th was a few more fun route 66 stops, and lots of driving.... we did visit the Four Corners monument where you can stand in 4 states at once.



 and we enjoyed yet more gorgeous scenery driving on to Colorado.

taken from the car while driving.. it turned out great!! 

 We spent the 10th in Cortez CO so we could go another 45 minutes drive to Mesa Verde National Park bright and early in the morning - Next Blog




Monday, June 27, 2016

My Trip Part IV: The Grand Canyon!!

 The grand Canyon is beyond beautiful! and I have to say my hat is off to the wonderful national park system that tries to make such majestic sights as accessible as they do.  In the actual national park they had shuttles running to various look outs and several of the trails where wheel chair accessible.    No body should be denied these sight in person.

We spent the 8th at the National Park, and the 9th we went to the skywalk.  I don't have skywalk pictures, because they make you pay for them... and we did buy a couple, but I prefer the ones we took ourselves mostly at the National Park.

I adore the panoramic views you can get on the iPhone!


This sight just really called to me, 2 trees forming a cross on the rim of the Grand Canyon