I sent these necklaces out a few weeks ago to a customer who attended my craft show over the summer.
I was thrilled when she wrote this really sweet response upon receiving her package: "Absolutely, positively gorgeous. I love them. These necklaces have exceeded my expectations. I WILL BE PURCHASING MORE. They make great gifts!"
Saturday, September 29
A coworker bought her mom a really pretty necklace with green lampwork beads and asked me if I could make some earrings to match. I used a vivid green to create these heart drop earrings. I shaped the main beads into bi-cones and then formed the little hearts with gravity and a knife-like tool. My wire work and the hooks are silver.
Below is the glass necklace created by another artisan.
Monday, September 24
We never spend our free money. It just always goes back into the pot, but this time when we got some cash back my husband and I decided we'd do something with it. So we called up my folks and the four of us went on a tour of south central New York.
Corning was our first stop, and we spent the whole day at the museum. It's amazing how much time you can spend there and still not see everything. We highly recommend trying a Make Your Own Glass session. My dad and husband made blown-glass pumpkins, and I made a fused glass wind chime. I was pretty excited with how it came out. Above you'll see it's in progress. I got us half price rooms at the Econo Lodge with my Entertainment book membership - love that thing! A hot breakfast was included, and if you happened to be there, it's likely my parents helped you figure out the waffle maker.
The next morning we walked up and down Market Street, Corning's main street, and came across a pie eating contest. We had walked into a coffee shop earlier that morning and actually met a contestant. We rooted for coffee guy, but the mayor beat him by a mouthful.
Lunch was a fresh baked pizza a Jeraldo's and we enjoyed some garlic knots, stopped by Glassart Studio and Montour Falls which you could drive right by on a village street if you didn't look up.
Taughannock Falls State Park was on our way so we stopped and did a 1.5 mile hike to the cataract. I expected we may walk just a ways because, although my parents love the outdoors, their knees are so not crazy about hiking. We mosied along the trail and while they took their time, B and I went up to the end. The narrow cascade that is higher than Niagara Falls was lovely to behold as it tumbled to the green pool below. We decided to pick up the pace and get back to my folks just as my dad rounded the corner asking how much farther because mom wasn't too far behind. We couldn't believe it! I knew she could do it, but her knee was bothering her more than usual so I didn't know if she would. We told him she'd have to keep coming now because it was so close. We didn't know she'd already made up her mind to make it, and she went all the way to the lookout! See the tiny people to the right in the top right photo?
We dined at the Moosewood Restaurant in Ithaca - yes, that of vegetarian cookbook fame - and the meal was fresh and prepared with care. The 40 minute wait is worth it. Ithaca is a hopping town and reminded us of Boulder, Colorado and Burlington, Vermont. Every hotel was booked! Finally we found a room at a place fellow hikers on the trail had suggested to my parents. This place cost twice as much, had no breakfast, no free DVDs, no noise insulation and not one clock in the room. The people below us had moved their furniture outside and talked and drank in to the wee hours. I was very close to calling the management, but let it go which is not my nature. I'll chalk it up to being under the weather. A cold that had started developing late Friday was in full swing Saturday night. Ugh. I really needed some sleep. We got up nice and early and took showers. The pipes made a hideously glorious racket that couldn't have pleased me more. B said he thought he heard the people downstairs pounding. I sure hope so.
Since there was no breakfast this actually lined us up perfectly to drive to Plainville Farms and enjoy their Sunday brunch. The turkey on the horse is a lawn ornament outside the nondescript one-story building. As you may know, you can purchase Plainville Farms deli meats that are purported to undergo the least amount of processing. Now I am generally not a fan of buffets, but this was spectacular. Mini waffles, ham sliced as you like it, crispy bacon, frittatas, scrambled eggs, blueberries, strawberries, fresh whipped cream, out-of-this-world chicken and biscuits, apple cobbler, homemade bread pudding - I had it all and more. There was a full salad bar and even pudding. I love pudding, but there is something about restaurant pudding that just really does it for me. Yes, I know it comes out of a can, but I just love it. Creamy, smooth, vanilla goodness...mmmmm - with a dollop of whipped cream, of course.
Our next stop was the historical Sodus Point lighthouse. Lake Ontario was a deep indigo, and while it was still warm a steady wind made waves and ruffled the flag on the front porch of the museum. After wandering the gardens we all piled back in the car and headed home. My cold was in full swing so I was looking forward to that destination more than I would have if I had felt better. To give me time to rest, my folks hopped in their car when we got back, and I started laundry and got ready to go back to work. Ugh. It was as rough as I thought, but I got through the day thanks to Day-Quil.
Tuesday, September 18
Thursday, September 13
My guy and I tried some new mountain biking trails last weekend and we aim to go back for more this weekend! In these pics we are on a training track. It was a lot of fun. I promptly dumped my bike while B was doing jumps! One trail was just a scribble on the map, so he said, "Let's try this one!" I asked if my bike was smoking at one point because I was gripping the brakes pretty good down what felt like a mile of switchbacks. Of course B is more coordinated, but what I lack in coordination I make up for in effort and pure love of trying things that might seriously get me maimed.
A few weeks ago our local alternative newspaper had an entry form in it to go to my city's oldest art festival and paint a smock. They supplied the canvas-like smocks and paint; entrants just had to bring their creativity. Winners were being called on Monday, but I hadn't heard anything, and as I was driving home I was contemplating what I would do with the smock (maybe sell it on Etsy?). When I got in the house the message light was blinking and low and behold I took first place! I have been honorable mention and in the top ten, but have never won an art contest outright so I was pretty tickled. Do you have an Art Contest story - successful or otherwise? Let's hear it!
Friday, September 7
Thursday, September 6
I received the first thing I've ever purchased off Etsy today and it...is...fabulous! A smiley new lunchbox featuring original screen printed artwork by Dog Bone Art. I got a little stuffed banana, too! The attached tag says he likes to tell knock knock jokes, rock climb and swim. Well, he's a friend of mine then.
Need great Halloween party favors? Check out Dog Bone Art's Candy Corn plushies! Also, if you like cheese and cupcakes (not together, silly) this is the artist for you!
Today I found the perfect lyrics to describe my mood of late. Maybe you know Steal My Sunshine by Len:
"I was lying on the grass
on Sunday morning of last week
indulging in my self defeats.
My mind was thugged, all laced and bugged,
all twisted round and beat
uncomfortable three feet deep."
Who knows what the three feet deep means, but the rest is right on. I guess the band's a one-hit wonder.
Oh, the squirrel just freaked out. It was hysterical. I am on the deck with my laptop and a squirrel routinely makes a trip across our roof, jumps to a post on the deck, scampers across the railing and down the stairs to the yard. Well, I heard something behind me and finally looked up to see him balanced on the wooden ball that adorns the post. He leaned forward in surprise to see the sight of company and jumped right back on the roof.
I will probably be jumping right back into the house because the neighbor kids just came outside and the silence is over.
Wednesday, September 5
People, I have been in a funk. Maybe I'm not even out yet, but I just got back from my gymnastics class and feel pretty good. There were new people and they are awesome, so now I am inspired to do better. My front flips were as consistently mediocre as they have ever been! This is good for me.
Today was "Say it like it is" Day at work. It's not a real holiday, but after a few comments this afternoon we gave it that name. For instance my co-worker just got her hair cut, but is pushing it back like she always does so my other co-worker says, "Why did you even bother getting it cut if you are just going to push it back?" She leaves the room to return moments later with Pat Benatar bangs circa 1980-something. (If you are too young to know who that is, Google it, LOL.) Fabulous. I was being ornery and noted it and giant-banged co-worker said, "Yes, I noticed you've more hostile - than usual." Not physically so, now mind you. Just verbally hostile. Been trying to just stay quiet. Mainly I get hostile after I hang up with someone and say what I really wanted to say. No you can't fax over a color picture for me to scan. Seriously folks.
Tomorrow's another day.