Friday, January 16, 2009

Friday Communique

We celebrated a big anniversary last night: my grandparents have been married for 61 years! They're an incredible couple who completely adore each other. I'm grateful every day that they're still a great part of my life.

My aunts presented a beautiful vase full of tropical flowers to get us all to start thinking about our big family cruise to Hawaii in a few months - yaay! - and Mom brought a delicious lemon cake that she decorated with blooms from my favorite flower, the daffodil. Grandpa patiently sat through lots of pictures and stared at the cake the entire time. Once he had that first bite in his hand, he was not so pleased with the cameras anymore. Oh Grandpa, you and your sweet tooth!

Please check out what some of my very sweet friends were up to this week:

Sara Hardin (AKA SoftFlexGirl) is preparing for CHA and creating lots of new free projects.
Check out her new wine charms!

Kristen Fagan loves telecommuting for Soft Flex Company. Read how working from home reaps "green" rewards for our environment.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Playing with Wire

A friend commented the other day, while looking at some new earrings, that she's never been a fan of colored wire in large doses. She likes to see an accent of colored wire in a piece, but doesn't care for jewelry made entirely of colored wire. She's a girl who knows what she wants!

These earrings were made with her in mind. I paired new brass pendants that my friends at Vintaj sent over (Thank you Jess!) with brass rounded loop ear wires. To connect the two brass components, 24-gauge Artistic Wire in Dark Blue was used to form a long wire wrapped link. I love how the subtle color of the wire seems to add more dimension to the embossed pendant pieces.

I can never seem to make just one pair of earrings at a time. So...I pulled out some lovely glass flowers from the sweet Michele Goldstein that I've been wanting to use for awhile now. The colors of the flowers are great, aren't they? To me, they're a little bit girly, but not TOO girly. I thought silver wire would push them over to the too girly side, so used 22-gauge Artistic Wire in Gun Metal to toughen up the look just a tad. Single links of etched oval brass wire were used to connect the wrapped flowers and the earwires. Hooray for new earrings!

Friday, January 9, 2009

Friday Communique

Every time I see Madison and Emma they ask, "When can we come to your house and make bracelets?" The girls were in Scottsdale with me last week, and we needed to kill some time between party prep and the actual party, so we played with some foam and plastic beads found at the dollar store.

The girls took to stringing right away, coming up with patterns and mixing the two types of beads. We were in serious need of some Bead Stoppers. If only Auntie Jamie had been prepared. No worries though. The girls finished their stretchy necklaces and proudly wore them as they partied the night away. Hooray for new beaders!

Please check out what some of my other favorite beaders were up to this week:

Sara Hardin (AKA SoftFlexGirl) reviewed the book 1000 Glass Beads!

Kristen Fagan headed out into the bitter cold to enjoy the Chihuly: The Nature of Glass exhibit at the Phoenix Desert Botanical Garden. It was well worth the shivering!

Have a lovely weekend! xoxo

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Bother-free is the way to be

Miss Rebecca dropped by the other day with a new freelance project for me work on, along with a present! As if the super cute hand-stitched pouch wasn't enough, there were three shiny packages inside. Is it candy? Even better, it's tea. Tea that blooms!

Which flavor to try first? Noble Essence felt like it should be saved for a very special occasion and Let It Snow just didn't seem right for a sunny 65 degree day, so Red Song won out. The tea began flowering the second the water hit it and at first made me thing of Audrey II from Little Shop of Horrors.

My attempt to show the different stages of the bloom were foiled by steam:

The full bloom is gorgeous, not to mention highly caffeinated. Red Song is strong, delicious, long-lasting stuff my friends. It's perfect on a day, such as this, when insomnia has been kicking my butt for two weeks. Thank goodness for my Winnie the Pooh mug. It's clear, so it perfectly shows off the flower, and it boasts a sweet little message: Bother-free is the way to be. Oh Pooh, you're so wise.

Thank you Rebecca! xoxo

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

And two weeks pass by in a flash...

Well, hello there. I'm easing back into the daily routine after a lovely two weeks off. I find it quite easy to stay away from the computer and, it must be said, it was a very nice break. Too bad coming back to work doesn't come quite so easily.

My time off began Christmas eve with my dad, grandpa, and bro (who tries to beat me up if I try to take his picture). We had pizza and Jack Daniels and exchanged gifts and stories.
Dad gave Grandpa a Duck's Unlimited vest just like the one he was wearing. When I pulled out the camera he decided he needed to go put on his matching red plaid flannel for the photo op. Then they decided to add some props...
We didn't drink all of that handle that night, but we did enjoy a good amount of it. The Hogsett men love them some Tennessee whiskey and I'm more than willing to try and keep up. Grandpa has been giving me sips of his "tea" for as long as I can remember, so I'm fairly well conditioned!

It's always good to see my grandpa. He's a sweetheart and a ladies man. He's worn cowboy boots nearly every day of his life and he LOVES to dance. He and his friends go to dances at senior centers all over northern Colorado one to three times a week. He's a charmer, that Vern.

My dad is pretty sweet too! He owns a jewelry store and is always exhausted by Christmas eve, so it's nice to spend a quiet, relaxing evening with him. We missed having Julie with us - she went home to spend time with her new baby nephew and family - but it was still a good time. When the guys started flipping through gun magazines, I pulled out my beads and finished some last minute presents. It was perfect!

More stories to come, including some from my fun trip to Arizona where it was oh-so-delightfully warm. Happy New Year to you all! I hope you enjoyed some wonderful family time and I wish you all the best in 2009!