About Me

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I love hammering gold, silver, copper, brass, and bronze into amazing textured custom rings, custom wedding rings, engagement rings, and other unique artisan jewelry.  I have an extensive selection of men's and women's rings, along with gemstone and pearl jewelry in my SilverSmack shop on Etsy.  Please stop in and take a look.

A Poem I wrote

Beyond Semi-precious

Lapidolite, Dumorterite, Iolite

even the sedimentary syllables shine

nutured by nature

colored by the earth


fossilized blooms

petrified sunsets

envelop me

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Sunday, March 30, 2008

The Lightbox Factor

Well, I've had my lightbox for a few days and I finally took the lights out of the bubble wrap, plugged them in, and figured out what it could do. For a rather unimpressive piece of equipment, the results were stunning. I also had to made a new pendant to photograph. I chose a 30mm Kyanite oval pendant and I chose to accent it with a Black Diamond, A Sapphire, and a Moonstone. No small potatoes here. My first pictures were going to be of something very special. The pendant has some shimmer in it, so I had to figure out a way to show that without having glare. I put the little tent thing over the light box, set the pendant in there and stood it up with Silly Putty (Oh yeah!) , put my camera on the tripod, and started taking pictures. I could tell right away that they were turning out better. They looked clearer on the little camera screen. I think this was a good investment.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Dude. . .Where's My Classroom?

One year, for April Fool's Day, my ever-so-well-behaved seniors told me that the principal had an envelop for me. So, I headed down the hall after him. When I came back to my room, everything was gone! The desks, my desk, my computer- everything- and all the kids were sitting quietly on the floor reading their books as if it were an ordinary day. They just looked up at me sweetly like nothing was wrong. They wouldn't even tell me where everything was, but eventually we got everything back, but they were pretty proud of themselves. I wasn't mad because it was harmless and nobody got hurt and they felt like they really pulled a fast one.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

The Investigation. . .

Our home investigation was yesterday. My husband is adopting my seven-year old daughter from my first marriage, so the juvenile court lady had to come do a home investigation to make sure our home is suitable and my daughter and husband have a loving bond. It was basically a bunch of questions about my income, (I'm not adopting anybody. I don't have to. ) education, birthplace, and other boring stuff. Same questions for my husband. A few questions for my daughter, but not too many. My three-year old kept bringing trucks to show her. She was muoy impressed. Then, she looked at my daughter's and my son's rooms. She hasn't even seen my ex in over a year. I don't think she even remembers him as her dad.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

The Crap that's in my Yard

It's a classic.

This is the 40x60 garage that is already full of crap.

This is my landscaping art.

More stuff he should. . .shhhhh. . .SELL!

Don't even ask!

I have no idea what this is. A ramp?

My husband just went to Iowa to get our brand new truck. I'm serious.

I think this is 23% of a windmill and some metal wheels.

We recently moved. We have a beautiful house. We have 23 acres. And we already have a lot of crap in our yard. My husband is a "Collector." This is just the stuff that isn't covered by snow. And that isn't in our huge 40x60 garage. I asked him not to clutter up the new yard. No "parts cars" and no junk. He really listens. Oh yeah, and he was going to "pare down" his collection and sell a bunch of stuff. I'm still waiting. And he complains about my bead mess?

Saturday, March 22, 2008

The Hunt for the Hunt

Well, we had to hunt for the Easter egg hunt because it didn't flippin' exist. Sheesh. My youngins were a tad sad and so was I because it's fun digging for those eggs in the snow. :) Last year, the night before the hunt we got about 18 inches of fresh, fluffy snow. Boy, was that a challenging Easter egg hunt. At first it was kind of easy because you could see the tracks from the people that left the eggs, but after the snow got tromped on a bit and the eggs got more buried, you actually had to dig in the snow for them. Oh yeah, we had our snow pants on, our heavy winter boots, our hats and our mittens. That was a happy Easter. This year, we kept driving by the park hoping someone would show up with some eggs to hide, but no such luck. I can't believe they didn't have it. Actually, I don't even really know who puts it on. Some weird cult "Faith Center" church on the edge of town. The members of the congregation spy on the other members and try to find out stuff about them. If they hear that you did something wrong or bad, even 15 or 20 years ago, before you were a member, you have to go in front of the council of elders and they question you about it and dole out a suitable punishment. How many people did things in grade school, high school, and college that they regret? Just about everybody. Hmmmm. I just like their Easter egg hunt. I was also able to make to more pendants today. The Rhyolite is pretty rare because the mine is mined out and the only Rhyolite they can find now has a lot more brown in it.

Friday, March 21, 2008

"Here, play with this. . ."

I'm experiencing some kind of stomach abnormality and I just don't feel good. Yesterday, I drove to work with a bucket in my car. Just in case. I didn't use it, but I thought I might be better off if I did. So, my husband was Mr. Super Productive Bob Vila today. Putting up shelves, hanging pictures, putting up my cabinet in the bathroom, and the like. I was the polar opposite. I sat on my butt, lain on the floor for awhile. Oh, I actually did make two pendants. And listed them. I sold the green and coral one in my other post and I was pretty excited about that. My biggest accomplishment of the day was taking a bath. I was in the bathtub trying to relax because I felt like crap and my three-year-old son came in (of course) with his rubber ducky and rubber frog. I was nice and comfortable. My eyes were closed. The water was hot and steamy. This little voice says "Here, play with this!" and he pegs me in the eye with the rubber ducky. Then, he conks me in the nose with the rubber frog. Now, I know he really was just trying to give them to me so I could play in the tub, but I just wanted to soak.

Friday, March 14, 2008

I Can't Be the Only One. . .

Please take my poll on work area messiness:


Thursday, March 13, 2008

My Hair Hurts

I think I'm getting the flu. My hair hurts. My back feels like I was in a rowing competition yesterday. My teeth ache. There is a growing pressure in my forehead. The back of my neck feels like I've been looking down for a really long time and my head is very heavy. My nose is a snot factory and therefore totally raw and red, thus giving me grief with every new wipe with the tissue. My legs feels unable to support the weight of my body. I've got a hacking cough that doesn't ever quit. Blinking seems to take an extreme amount of effort, as does breathing. Sleeping is also difficult because the pressure of the bed against my skin is painful. Seeing also takes a concerted effort. Will I call in sick for work? Nope. I'll feel like crap anyway. I might as well be at work.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Uninspired. . .

My husband and I cleaned the kitchen table (my work area) for my daughter's birthday party and now I can't work. All that neatness and order drives the creativity right out of me. I really do need chaos and disorder to create anything. I don't know why. I can't stand a neat work area. I need a great big huge mess. The bigger, the better. When I had the entire table covered with beads, I was making and listing between 1-3 pendants a day. Now, I've come to a screeching halt. I need to find a place where I can make a mess and leave it. I can't clean up every day. It's counter-productive. Of course, half the time I can't find anything in my big mess, but I certainly can't find it when it's put away either. I need to find a balance. Or a new area that I can leave a little messed up. I wanted to get a big roll-top desk and have my mess on that and then just shut it when company comes. But my husband had to have this little useless antique secretary's desk. It's too small for anything. Now, I have to find something else to mess up.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

That's Show Biz

My son fell asleep about a half an hour before the skating show and he was soooooo crabby, so we let sleep and thought maybe he could come for the second act. My mom stayed with him and I brought my daughter. Meanwhile, my husband shows up at the show and asks where he is. I explained that he would probably be here for the second act. Well, he never came. My husband was so mad at me because he had to sit through a whole skating show and NOT see his son. Of course, he got to see our daughter. And the roof or something was dripping on him the whole time, so he got really wet, so he was crabby too. After the show, I went to my mom's to find out why she didn't come. She said when my son woke up, he wouldn't stop crying and he said his ear hurt. (He does get a lot of ear infections.) She gave him some Tylenol and about a half an hour later, he stopped crying. So I told her that my husband was mad at me because he never showed up at the skating show. Sheesh. I hate being stuck in the middle. But I took both kids home and we ate, took more Tylenol and went back to the show. My husband reluctantly went to the show again. The thing is, he had to pay another five dollars. My son was excited that Daddy was going to watch him skate. My husband called his mom to go with him too. I brought the kids there and I went in the skater's door, so I basically snuck in without paying, but I earned my keep. Parents aren't allowed in the locker rooms and were supposed to be people in there to get the kids ready, but there weren't, so good thing I was there. I got my son ready and lined up and ran off to check on my daughter and there she was without her skates on. I hurried and got her ready and lined up and sat down just in time to watch my son. It was really cute. He had two ladies drag him all over the skating rink. I videoed it. He was Winnie the Pooh. Then I had to change him ito his chipmunk costume. I tried to cheat and change his pants without taking off his skates, but it was not to be. I had to take those darn things off and put them back on. I hate doing that. While this is going, on I'm missing my daughter's performance. Then he can go sit with daddy and grandma while I go do the next costume change. Her hat was gone. We put her shirt on and I was able to cheat with her and just pull her pants over her skates, although there were two points where I though the pants were going to rip. We finally found her hat down the hall on the floor. Hmmmmmm. . . Somebody did that on purpose. I had hers hung up nice on a hanger with her shirt. Anyway, we got to watch for a little while and then they both had to line up for the chipmunk number. That went fine. Then they stayed back there for the finale. All was going smoothly until my son's coaches gave him a teddy bear. Well, the skating club had purchased these teddy bears to sell and I told my daughter not to ask for one, but today was her birthday and her brother just got a bear, so I had to get her the crappy teddy bear because she couldn't not get one if he got one. I also got them flowers because they are star skaters. And I never buy that crap. Ever. But it was her birthday and I didn't really get her anything. We couldn't even have her party because of the skating show. We are having a family one tomorrow. After the last skating show.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Life Is a Cabaret

Went to go see the musical Cabaret tonight. I had never seen it before. I thought it was a little more happy-go-lucky. I didn't realize it was so full of Nazis and abortion. It opened my eyes. I thought it was more of a feel-good musical; not a political statement. But, oh well. One of my students was in it. He was the Emcee. There was a lot of controversy about him playing that part because it is a role for a mature person and he's a teenager. Well, he showed them. He was awesome. He's also gotten to grab more boobs and butts than he's ever gotten to grab in his tender sixteen years. His grandma was at the show and I think she was a little shocked.

Reminded me of my stage days. My best high school role was when I played the Cobra Woman in "Hurricane Smith and the Garden of the Golden Monkey." I had a red cape, a crown, really funky make-up, and long gloves. I was sooo cool looking. We put that play on for all the grade school kids and for awhile, I was a minor celebrity. The little kids would come up to me for awhile in stores and places and hiss at me with little their snake hands because in the play, I had a snake pit and I would threaten people with it. On cue, the sock snakes would pop out of the snake pit and hiss. I was soooooo powerful. I had the lead in my senior class play too, but that role wasn't as cool as the Cobra Woman. The Cobra Woman rocked! Hssssssss. . .
I just made these two pendants. I have always loved Leopardskin Jasper, but Red Leopardskin Jasper, in my opinion, is the cream-of-the-crop. The color of the stone had such richness and depth. The Golden Jasper has been complimented by a Dark Amber 6mm nugget bead, a 4x6 pyrite rice bead, and 4mm greeen onyx. This truly brings out the colors and makes for a stunning piece.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Tastes Like Ass

So, I looked up some of the side effects for my new medication (Topomax) and one of them was that it made carbonated beverages taste funny. That sounded like such a dumb side effect. I didn't believe it. Sure enough, today at lunch when I went to drink my diet Mt. Dew, I grimaced at the taste of it. It tasted like ass. . . serious ass. Blech! How can that be a side effect? That's the stupidest thing I've ever heard. But if if helps my headaches, I can handle it. I'm also feeling a little spacey. I almost forgot to make my lunch. I did forget to eat breakfast. Anna Nicole Smith was on Topomax, so that explains a lot. My head feels fuzzy and funny, but it's not a headache, so that's good. My mouth is also very dry, but I can't even drink my flippin' Mt. Dew. I hope this is worth it.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Ice Ice Baby

One of the joys of living in "Big Snow Country" is the weather. It was a beautiful day the other day. I took the kids skiing, the sun was shining, and life was good. The next day, it rained. Not that big of a deal. But then, the temperature dropped to eleven degrees and everything that was wet, froze. Not good. School was delayed two hours because the roads were extremely icy. I took three steps onto the three degree incline I have to walk up to work and I slid back down in slow motion. I took three more steps and slid back down again. I wished somone was taping me for funniest home videos because I think I could have won.

More about ice. The Ice Show is this weekend. I painfully did sell most of my raffle tickets. Grrrrr. My son, who was a pretty decent skater before ice show practice, seems to have forgotten how to skate. He's going to be the last one in the line that everyone has to wait for and that they finally have a helper come and drag him to where he's supposed to be. Guaranteed. I think they already have someone lined up to be there. And I will be there in all my glory to capture it all on video. Three times.

Monday, March 3, 2008

My Headache is a Headache

I had to go see a neurologist today because I've been getting these horrible migraines. Like, "Mommy, why won't you get up off the floor?" migraines. They started about two years ago when I started getting horrible cramps. Well, I ended up getting a hysterectomy for the cramps and I thought the two might be related, but no. The cramps stopped (obviously), but the headaches continued. Some months, it was sixteen days in a row I would get them. Utter misery. My neurologist is this little lady from Poland who talks really fast and talks a lot and about everything. I liked her 'til she started hitting me with her little metal hammer. Then, I wasn't so sure. She gave me a prescription for Topomax which she referred to as "preventive therapy" and Relpax which she referred to as "abortive therapy," but with her rather heavy accent, it took me awhile to figure out what exactly she was saying. She was worried about prescribing the Topomax because one of the side effects is weight loss. "And that is bad because. . . " She didn't see my humor, but she made it very clear that she will take me off it if I lose too much weight. I told her that I just lost a bunch anyway. She also ordered an MRI. Yipeeee. Now, I have to take another day off from work. I really do hate missing work because it just makes more work.

The good news is my husband's biopsy came negative! It wasn't skin cancer. It was just some freakishly disgusting mystery lesion, but it's history now.
I made and listed this sweet pendant last night. This Red Green Garnet is one of the most interesting stones I've ever seen. The red and green together is just so rich.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Doubled Booked?

I didn't think our banker was going to be able to pull it off. Well, I don't know if he really pulled it off, but he had us sign an awful lot of papers. There is one thing he still may not have a handle on. Our mortgage payment for the house we just sold is automatically taken out of our account every month. We don't need to make that payment anymore because the house is sold, so that autopayment needs to be stopped. Auto-payment is scary. We cancelled our auto-payment for out dial-up internet (Yes, dial-up) and they still took it out and are still taking it out since November. When my husband called they said, "I'm sorry sir, we have no record of that." Grrrrr. So, needless to say, we don't have much faith in the cancelling of the auto-payment. But, our banker sent an email, but apparently, that wasn't good enough. Then he gave us a number to call. When we got back from the bank, the realtor was waiting for us at our house. He said we were supposed to meet him at the title company today at 4:00. I said it was tomorrow because I knew we had the bank today. I wrote it on the calendar for 4:00 tomorrow as soon as I spoke with him. Any way, here he was- with more paperwork. So, we signed more paperwork, handed over the keys and the garage-door openers, and we were done. The house was sold. Two months from listing to closing in this crappy housing market. Certainly a record! Then my husband was going to go to the house and move the last few things, but then realized he has just given the realtor the keys. Duh! He had planned to go and do this, but we both thought the meeting was tomorrow. Luckily, we bought some doors for the old house and had them all keyed the same and we didn't use them all. We sold them to my husband's brother, so he went and borrowed their keys so he could get into our old house. What a thinker!

When he got back home he called the number the banker had given us to cancel the mortgage payment. . . "Hello, you have reached the New AT & T. For English, dial one. . ." The banking genius has struck again. Sheesh.