Archive for January, 2010


It’s Tuesday, after all.

Click HERE to view my entire shop, or click on the thumbnails below to see the individual listings.

!RED! No. 2 - click me!

And this one remains from last week’s listings – or are you guys gonna make me keep this one, too?

Cranberry Salmon !BLING! Barrel - click me!

A BAD ice storm is predicted for Thursday afternoon/evening, possibly followed by several inches of snow. Ice is far worse than snow, because it breaks power lines and trees snap from the weight. We had one of these a few years ago, and it was just awful. We were without power for at least 12 hours, and it took months for the city to haul away everyone’s broken tree limbs.

SO – what I’m going to do is have my Superstars sale on Wednesday (tomorrow), rather than Thursday. This way I won’t have to worry about power outages before or during the sale, and I can get all the paid-for items on their way Thursday morning before it gets really, really bad. I’m hoping they’re just wrong and this new cluster won’t materialize, but I grow less optimistic with each new weather report.

Thanks for stopping in!

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It isn’t something I enjoy. I like to be constantly busy. Not rushing around all over town busy, but I like to keep my hands and brains occupied. I purposefully let myself run out of oxygen so that I could take a weekend off. That’s when I realized why I don’t take vacations. To me, a vacation is not a vacation if it’s forced by inclimate weather, houseguests or lack of supplies. A vacation is simply choosing not to work when you’re perfectly able to work. Again, I have a very hard time with that. I’m better than I used to be, but I guess I’m still a workaholic that way. I pretty much stared all weekend and watched some of the worst movies I’ve ever seen. Movies so bad they left me anxious. We really need our Netflix back. If I had a choice, of course, I’d choose to watch good movies. And Dexter. Lots and lots and lots of Dexter.

So, today is my 10 year wedding anniversary. We aren’t doing anything TOO special – we won’t be renting a hall and a deejay and inviting everyone we know and don’t know. We had joked about registering somewhere like Target or Macy’s, because we didn’t do anything like that when we got married. Now that we’ve proven ourselves as a couple who could make it this far, we actually deserve a food processor and some new towels. (just kidding, really – if you’re family and are reading this, don’t send us any stuff.)

It’s practically a miracle if anyone stays married for this long any more. I think if most young couples could stick it out for the first few years, they might have a better chance if it’s truly meant to be. I know the first few years were some of the hardest for us. We were still getting to know each other and learning how to communicate, and getting up the gumption to ask for what we wanted of the other one and figuring out how to compromise. It isn’t even that simple, really. Some people must expect marriage to be just as floofy and full of confetti as their wedding day. It’s a lifetime of peeling back layers, hard digging and sorting that’s never done, but if you truly love that person you’ve just promised to share the rest of your life with, it’s worth it. With every obstacle we conquer, with every new solution we find to make our relationship better, we love each other more and everyone else pales in comparison – even after 10 years. Not too many people can say that at this point. Who knows what the future has planned for us, but I hope we’ll keep kicking its ass together.

Enough mushy stuff – I’m gonna go take some pictures since I’m up and have some light. For dread. I have, let’s see, 26 sets to photograph, create photo/description pages and html pages for. I want to get it all out of the way so that I can be as efficient as possible with the Superstars sales this coming month. I’ll tell you the good news again: I’m planning to have a preview before each sale starts. I’m not sure how LONG the preview will be, but I’m shooting for at least 30 minutes. So this means that you can start checking the Superstars page, roundabout 7:30 Central Time and start sending in your requests at 8PM as usual. And hey, guess what!? There will be a Superstars sale THIS THURSDAY!

Hey, here’s a sneak peek at one of the sets I’ll have for sale, some time over the next month or so:

Cosmic Apricot !BLING!

Thanks for stopping in!

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Long story short, my step-daughter, her mother and step-dad are moving back to OK. Meanwhile, the step-daughter is staying with us and will be going to school, and will continue to stay with us until mom and step-dad get here and get situated. It should only be for a month, max. I can handle it. I guess. I knew this was going to be happening for at least a month now, but I wasn’t going to believe it until it actually happened. I’m kind of like that about everything, including the things *I* say I’m going to do. By the way, I don’t always refer to her as “the step-daughter” – I’m simply not naming names for everyones’ privacy. In fact, I asked her straight up last night if she was okay with our relationship, and she cheerfully said “Yes!” And to be extra sure, I asked her if she’d tell me if she wasn’t, and gave another cheerful “Yes!” She told me she has come to understand how particular I am about certain things, and that she respects my quirks. Which is a very mature way for a teenager to be. But it doesn’t surprise me, since she’s such a good girl. At least she’s not a goody-goody.

She brought her cat Gelly along. He’s still a kitten, and is very energetic and he’s all over the place. It’s difficult to really engage him in eye contact and long cuddles due to his kitten-ness. He’s gotten the squirt bottle a few times when testing his boundaries (on the kitchen counters, particularly), and the old stripey cats have taught him a few lessons too. He seriously threw the cat hierarchy into a tailspin the first day, the hissing was nonstop, but things have settled quite a bit. It’s like these cats know that he won’t be a permanent fixture, so they’d might as well tolerate him while he’s here. I call him Gelly Belly Jingle because he’s kinda flabby and has a little green bell around his neck. He’s adorable! Even though I’m usually more partial to tabbies… they’re somehow more believable as cats. Here he is, in the prime cat spot – the dryer! I can’t believe I was able to get such a good shot of him – this was the only one out of 10 or 11 that turned out.

gelly cat, gelly cat - it's not your fault! (but, actually, it probably is.)

I plan on finishing up on the soda lime over the weekend and getting to work on boro next week. So you’ll see plenty of Superstars and maybe even a few Etsy sales over the next month. I’ve been making a few Bebeadeds, too, and that’s been a lot of fun.

sorry for the long-ish patch of time between updates… thanks for checking in!

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Click HERE to see my shop, or click on each thumbnail below to get to the individual listing.

Blue-Green Shimmer - click me!


Scarabesque - click me!


Cranberry Salmon !BLING! Barrel - click me!

Sorry for the lack of updates lately… something’s happening, and I’ll fill you in on it later. Nothing bad, just distracting.

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Just saying hi

…because I don’t have much else to say on a Rainy Saturday.

Rainy Saturday

This is the kind of winter day I just love. Drizzly, chilly (but not cold) and slightly foggy. It’s perfect for starting a new Bebeaded before going ahead and turning on the kiln. I’m giving myself just a few more days of soda lime freedom before I start on the boro.

I had to go to Target AND Walmart and still managed to forget the paper towels. I wish everything I needed was at Target, and that it was open 24 hours. It’s closer and smaller and altogether much more pleasant than Walmart. Walmart has my fish food and bubble mailers, but neither one of them have my shampoo. Since my hair is so picky, I guess I’ll just have to drive clear across town.

Gonna get on that and chew on some Reese’s peanut butter hearts.

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Etsy again, already!

Hey, on time for the first time in at least a couple of weeks.

Click HERE to visit my shop, or on each thumbnail below to see the individual listings.

Atomic Beeswax - click me!

Green Scheme Super Stars - click me!

Nightfall - click me!

 All right! I’ve been preparing these listings all day, and forgot to eat.

Thanks for checking in!

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Sunday it reached a balmy 36 degrees…

…and it was the first day in at least a few to warm up above freezing. The highs will be near 50 this coming week. (Yesterday, I think I heard the weather man say it got up to 56.) I can’t believe it was 17 degrees just the other day. There’s still snow on my lawn from over two weeks ago, but there won’t be for long.

In other news, on Sunday, I woke up to Mr Sarah informing me that he not only downloaded the 30 day free trial Adobe CS 4, but also seamlessly imported/migrated my Go Live site files into Dreamweaver and it was ready for me to conquer. For dread. But as soon as I got out of bed and injected some coffee into my eyeballs, I had DW figured out within a couple of hours. Well, just the basics of what I need to know to continue maintaining my website and selling Superstars, and that’s good enough for now. It’s very similar to Go Live, but also heavily utilizes CSS.  Whatever that is. Technically, I don’t know anything about HTML code either, but HTML has been around so long that writing code is as easy as dropping icons into document pages and dragging strings over to a folder full of files. I suppose CSS hasn’t yet been simplified to such a point of “any yokel can do it”, so it’s going to make making do a little harder for a while. I guess I’ll have to get out the For Dummies book. We can thank the World Wide Web Consortium, (yes, there really is such a thing, if you can believe it) for eliminating a cluster for professional website designers and creating an entirely new one for a bead-slinging “dummy” like me.

And I’m going to have to come up with $400 for this new software package within the next month, which I’ll probably never get around to using at its full potential before it reaches its obsolescence. That could be anywhere between 2 and 5 years from now, and if you’re living in a cave and not paying attention (like me), it really sneaks up. I’ll have to unexpectedly come up with another enormous chunk of change for the new version when the old version “mysteriously” becomes corrupted, and if I still have this blog-thing, you guys will be reading about it and wondering if you’re having a deja vu moment. But really, I can’t complain too much, since $400 for CS4 Premium is a steal of a deal. It normally costs $1800, but Mr. Sarah gets a discount. That, and I can make my website look exactly how I want, and not have to rely on some other monkey and their wacky ideas of “elegant web design”. (as if mine were all that great – I just like to be in CONTROL.) So, yeah, I’m totally coming out on top of this one, but I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t piss and moan about it a little.

And with this balmy weather, I was able to eak out a few beads on Sunday, even at midnight, without too much discomfort. I tried my new Reichenbach Raspberry Opal – which is too excellent. It’s a little foamy at first, but it calms down quickly. It’s also not too smooshy like darker opaque 104 pinks tend to be, so I was able to make a Fizz Tab without any remarkable distortion of the base bead. The only drawback I found is that it tends to swallow surface decoration, but not excessively, and you can barely even tell at room temp. (sometimes the flame reveals little imperfections that aren’t as visible when the bead is cool.) All in all, it is a beautiful, unique, and user friendly color.

The Mystic Pink is similar in color to RO, and appears to have a slightly pearly sheen (but my guess is that it isn’t quite as pearly as the pearl pink), is more streaky than the RO, and unfortunately, the longer it’s worked, the more devitrification it grows. Bah. Even after nearly 12 years, I’m still not sure what type of flame chemistry can be used to avoid devit (which is basically patches of chalkiness on the surface of the glass, in case you don’t know), or if it can be avoided at all in certain applications. Like Evil Purple, it will have to be a glass that I use in smaller amounts and is added farther along in the repeated heating and cooling/design process. But let me clarify, it’s NOTHING like Evil Purple. Evil Purple is straight up psychopathic, and Mystic Pink just has a couple of little grand larceny charges on her record. She never hurt anybody.

The Multicolor 104 COE – well, it’s nice, but I’ll just have to trust that it will give me a range of minty greens, blues and purples, even though it looks a little browny green going into the kiln. I was able to strike a little spacer to deep purple-blue, and it stuck through annealing. I need to work with it some more. I’m going to keep a close eye on these beads for several days for cracking, but I have a good feeling about it. I just do. I’ve done a little research, and haven’t found complaints about incompatibility clogging up the message boards, and that’s another good sign.

Okay, that’s enough blah-blah for now… I plan on doing some Etsy listings later today.

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I’m exceptionally annoyed with the cold because I got a small amount of Reichenbach 104 COE in the mail yesterday, and I’m really antsy to try it out. I mean, so antsy, I can hardly stand it. Rewind to last week sometime: I was already considering buying some Reichenbach 104 when I came across Florence’s Etsy shop (she’s one of my favorite bead folks), where she had a few beads made from R 104 COE Multicolor. She’s also one of those nice ones who often shares what colors she used in her bead descriptions – I’d do that too, but if I were to share every color I used in a set of beads, the list of colors would be about a mile long and you’d be yawning and pressing the back button halfway through. Anyway, her beads sold me on Reichenbach 104 Multicolor, so I placed an order for it. It can yield blues, greens and purples… so when I opened the package today and found a surprising pinky mocha color with sort of a greeny tan core, I was a bit concerned. I could not find a photo of the Multicolor 104 rod anywhere I thought to look – I could only find finished beads – but Florence was kind enough to advise me that I did, indeed, have Multicolor. So thanks for your guidance, Florence, with Multicolor and some of the other colors too!

I also got Opal Raspberry, Caramel and Mystic Pink. I’ll report back when I have something – I just hope I don’t have to report an incompatibility crack. I have a pretty good feeling about Reichenbach 104, but I’m always a little shy about jumping into any new 104 COE line head first. For me, it’s imperative that it’s really truly compatible with Effetre and Vetrofond, because they are permanent fixtures in my life and I will always use them. Even though I’ve had better than anticipated results with CIM, the ASK Crack-Fest taught me not to open my wallet and succumb to the rich purple, green and pink sirens who whisper and sing, “Wooo, we’re beautiful AND Effetre and Vetrofond compatible! Ooohh! Melt us, mix us, USE us with reckless abandon! We’ll even watch you eat horseradish and hard boiled egg sandwiches through the keyhole while you sit on the edge of the bathtub, if that is what you desire of us! We will be true and we will looove you foreverrrrr….” I mean, really. The allure of pretty colors can make a glass junkie hallucinate.  Now, I limit my use of ASK to small amounts, such as surface dots and bumps, never as a base bead, never encased, so my beautiful ASK colors are not completely going to waste.

While I’m here, I might as well show you the new design I mentioned earlier this week. Please pardon the not so great photo, I was having a very linty, badly lit photo day. The colors are much more sublime in person, and are reminiscent of some of my dad’s paintings during his op-art phase. His colors are very interesting – they’re bright, yet subdued somehow. I feel a very strong inexplicable connection to these particular colors… they take me somewhere odd, not anywhere I’ve ever been, but at the same time, everywhere I’ve been. Maybe because I often dream in these colors, and I’ve had dad’s art around me my whole life. I don’t normally get this deep or contemplative about my beads, so it’s a little bit disconcerting. Perhaps I should keep these particular beads for myself.

new design - not sure what to call them yet

Anyway, what do you think? I’ve been mulling this design over for years. These look simple, and they are, except for the shaping part and how it works with the dots. They’re pressed into a sleek elliptical shape, and with the pressing I don’t have quite as much control over how well the dots “slide” and where they end up. These are just the prototypes. I probably shouldn’t have used coral for the bases, as coral tends to be a little squishy and cantankerous when used as a base for stiffer transparent colors. I made a whole set in a glorious yellow scheme, and you’ll see those for sale somewhere, eventually.

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Okay, I muddled through and listed some stuff on Etsy. Have a look-see, will you? Click HERE to get to my shop, or on the thumbnails below to see each individual listing.

Pastel Sunbeams - click me!


Pink !BLING! Window Rondell - click me!


Serape BLING X-Tab - click me!

Have a great weekend if you don’t hear from me again… stay warm! Looks like everyone is extra cold these days.

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So Wednesday night, I opened Adobe Go Live CS 2 (my web design program) for the first time since we put Windows 7 on my machine. Go Live has always been a little buggy, no matter what, but I was always able to make do. With Win 7, not so much, there’s some sort of odd window corruption. Another Go Live user mentioned the having the same problem on the Adobe forums, but never provided a solution. We’ve been obsessing about it and trying different things. I really don’t want to talk about it, it’s too complicated and frustrating. But I thought I ought to fill you in on why there were no beads on Etsy last night, since my Photoshop is now running slower than owl droppings in the wintertime. What the heck does Photoshop have to do with the Go Live? Again, it’s complicated.

I am so over this. Maybe I should start doing shows instead of screwing with the internet. The price to sell at these bead shows is probably far less $$$ over the long haul than maintaining a computer with programs that actually work.

And it’s still really, really cold and all I want to do is make beads. Blech. But right now, I’m working on some Etsy listings. It will be later this evening before they’re ready. Thanks again for your patience.

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