Rocky Mountain Memories ~ Estes Park, Colorado

Apr 30, 2014

All of last week I was in Estes Park, Col­orado with mom and dad. We had a fab­u­lous time explor­ing every inch of Estes Park and Rocky Moun­tain Nation­al Park. I loved being able to com­bine work with play espe­cial­ly with mom and dad. They are a blast to trav­el with and guar­an­tees lot of laugh until you cry moments. Through­out the week, I will be shar­ing loads of pho­tos tak­en dur­ing our adven­ture. First I have to tell you about the fun I had teach­ing class­es at Rocky Moun­tain Mem­o­ries April 25th & 26th. Cheryl Grigs­by is liv­ing my dream. Seri­ous­ly I’m not kid­ding, she has a scrap­book store, an adorable rental cab­in and a home in Estes Park. Oh how this Texas girl wants to move to Estes Park so bad­ly. I tru­ly belong...

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Wire Wrapped Bird Nest Pendant

Apr 18, 2014

I love nature, espe­cial­ly any­thing hav­ing to do with birds and actu­al­ly have sev­er­al nests sit­ting in my stu­dio win­dow. Two are wren’s nests that mom removed from her hang­ing planters after the lit­tle wren fam­i­ly flew the nest. The oth­er nest is one I found that fell from a tree in our front yard. I even have two bird baths out­side my win­dow and enjoy the dai­ly bat­tles of a Blue Jay and Mock­ing­bird try­ing to claim its own­er­ship. Since I’ve start­ed mak­ing jew­el­ry pieces I decid­ed to include my love of nature in some of my cre­ations. Wire wrap­ping is a fun and so sim­ple tech­nique to do once you get the hang of it. At first you feel like you are all thumbs but then all of a sud­den it clicks and work­ing with wire and...

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Jewelry Clay + Stamps = Awesome Part 2

Apr 17, 2014

Here’s a peek at how the bird piece I cre­at­ed from jew­el­ry clay is com­ing along. If you missed the blog post about it last week you can view it here. As you can tell, I paint­ed, inked and stamped all over the cured jew­el­ry clay. Now I just need to wire wrap lots of beads and pearls to attach between each link. I love hav­ing lots of pret­ty spark­ly baubles on bracelets. I’m still not sure I like the tog­gle, actu­al­ly I know don’t the more I keep look­ing at it the more it both­ers me so it’s com­ing off and will be replaced with I have no clue as of...

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Observations from an Alcoholic’s Sister ~ Emotions

Apr 16, 2014

There are so many dif­fer­ent emo­tions fam­i­ly mem­bers of alco­holics feel. One emo­tion I def­i­nite­ly felt was anger. I was angry because of what I saw Richard’s alco­holism doing to him and to our fam­i­ly, espe­cial­ly mom. I felt as though Richard was being self­ish and unap­pre­cia­tive of all that mom and dad were doing in hopes of him get­ting sober and it made me furi­ous. I under­stand alco­holism is a brain dis­ease but like any dis­ease most do what they can to con­trol or get rid of their dis­ease, most don’t let the dis­ease con­trol them or end their life with­out some sort of fight. Alco­holism is a beast to con­trol and I saw first­hand how strong the crav­ings were but I still felt Richard could have tried a lit­tle hard­er to gain...

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Rocky Mountain Memories ~ I’ll be There Soon

Apr 14, 2014

I’m get­ting so excit­ed about my return vis­it to Rocky Moun­tain Mem­o­ries in Estes Park, CO. This is the sweet­est most quaint store that sits in the heart of down­town Estes Park along the river­walk. Rocky Moun­tain Mem­o­ries is filled with great prod­ucts and super fun peo­ple. Cheryl Grigs­by, the own­er is liv­ing my dream. Seri­ous­ly, a scrap­book store in Estes Park, CO, pure heav­en. Last year, when I taught there I got to stay in Rick and Cheryl’s amaz­ing cab­in. While there all I could think about was how much mom and dad would love stay­ing at “Redemp­tion Cab­in”. So this year, I’m bring­ing Mr. & Mrs. Claus along for the ride. They are get­ting  a won­der­ful mini vaca­tion in one of their all time favorite spots while I teach. Mom and Dad...

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Jewelry Clay + Stamps = Awesome

Apr 10, 2014

I need­ed a big accent for an idea I have for a cuff  and since I could­n’t find what I had in mind I decid­ed to make my own. I mixed a batch of ETI Jew­el­ry Clay, formed it into the shape I want­ed, and pressed one of Dina Wak­ley’s Scrib­bly Birds stamps into the resin clay. Then to cre­ate a slight bend in the piece so it forms to the wrist bet­ter, I cov­ered a bot­tle with plas­tic wrap, put the bot­tle on it’s side and placed the resin clay piece on the bot­tle to cure overnight. Super sim­ple. Once the piece cured overnight, I add paint lay­ers in green, beige, gold and brown and this is what it looks like so far. I’m going to LOVE this piece and can­not wait to...

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Observations from an Alcoholic’s Sister ~ Their Friends

Apr 9, 2014

Their Friends ~ talk about a real­ly hard issue for alco­holics. I feel alco­holics need to sev­er the major­i­ty if not all of their friend­ships in order to remain sober. This is because most alco­holics have friends who are social drinkers, are alco­holics them­selves and they may even have some who are drug abusers; I know all of this was true for Richard. In order for a recov­er­ing alco­holic to find the strength to remain sober, they can­not keep the same group of friends. If the friends an alco­holic con­tin­ues to hang around drinks or uses drugs in their pres­ence I feel those new to sobri­ety are on a fast track to relapse. If you real­ly think about it, how is a recov­er­ing alco­holic just com­ing out of rehab going to stay sober while...

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From The Archives ~ Paper Bag Easter Basket

Apr 8, 2014

This tuto­r­i­al was orig­i­nal­ly post­ed on my blog, April 11, 2011. Paper Bag East­er Bas­kets are fun to cre­ate and with East­er just around the cor­ner I thought I would re-share it. I love the sim­plic­i­ty of brown paper bags and think they make the per­fect East­er bas­kets. I remem­ber mak­ing them in grade school and being so excit­ed to bring them home to show mom and dad. This bas­ket can be left plain or altered using pat­terned paper, stamps, inks or paint. You can care­ful­ly use any of the many Fiskars bor­der punch­es to cre­ate gor­geous edges along the top of your bas­ket or you could take a hole punch and punch a hole just below where the scal­lop meets, thread a rib­bon through the holes and cre­ate a pret­ty bow by tying...

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Weekend Fun

Apr 7, 2014

Since Ter­ri and Laren live right in the heart of Deep Ellum, Sat­ur­day Alan and I head­ed down to see them, grand dog Lola AND go to the Deep Ellum Arts Fes­ti­val. Laren’s par­ents came down too so it was a super fun after­noon. First we walked over to Pepe’s & Mito’s to fill up on their awe­some Mex­i­can food. After we were all stuffed we start­ed walk­ing the streets. The fes­ti­val had some great bands play­ing and we had a won­der­ful time walk­ing, talk­ing, laugh­ing, dodg­ing rain drops and see­ing some amaz­ing art. I was so busy look­ing at art that the only pho­to I took was of this band. I can’t even tell you who they were but they were good. All the pho­tos of Lola were tak­en by Laren’s mom, Michelle. I was...

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Observations from an Alcoholic’s Sister ~ The Signs

Apr 4, 2014

Me and my fam­i­ly quick­ly picked up on tell tale signs that Richard had been drink­ing. If he walked into the room chat­ting away we knew right then he had been drink­ing. Chat­ti­ness was not the norm for Richard, me yes, him no. Richard was gen­er­al­ly a qui­et per­son and real­ly only spoke when he had some­thing to say. Soon to fol­low his chat­ti­ness, came red blood­shot eyes and not long after that, stum­bling. Once the stum­bling start­ed it went down­hill real­ly fast. He stum­bled into fur­ni­ture, knocked things off of tables, end­ed up break­ing things and had us all beg­ging him to please go upstairs and sleep it off. Alco­holics need to under­stand there are obvi­ous indi­ca­tors they are drink­ing. Richard would suck on pep­per­mints think­ing he was mask­ing the smell of the...

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Unexpected Creativity

Apr 2, 2014

Since I’ve real­ly jumped into this jew­el­ry mak­ing I decid­ed it was time to sort this 1 Pound Lux­u­ry Bead Soup Mix I pur­chased a while back from Mar­got Pot­ter. I grabbed one of my old muf­fin tins, sat in my big com­fy chair, put on my head­phones and start­ed sort­ing. You all know I love the thrill of the hunt and sort­ing this amaz­ing bag of assort­ed beads was just like being on a lit­tle scav­enger hunt. I had no idea what I would find but what I found was won­der­ful. As I start­ed sort­ing I dis­cov­ered I had enough of these green beads, which reminds me of the chi­clets gum I chomped on when I was lit­tle, to cre­ate a jew­el­ry ensem­ble. These green beads just so hap­pen to be my daugh­ter Ter­ri’s favorite...

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Leather & Rhinestones

Apr 1, 2014

I just added some new cuff style bracelets to my Etsy shop and I incor­po­rat­ed my love of vin­tage by adding vin­tage baubles to them. The com­bi­na­tion of leather, ham­mered met­al and the glam of vin­tage baubles is a favorite of mine. If you see some­thing you love in my shop don’t wait to make your pur­chase because once the item or items are sold I will not cre­ate anoth­er piece exact­ly as the one you loved. I like to keep things unique and one of a kind. Also if you have tee­ny tiny wrists as did one of my cus­tomers, SIZE 5, I will cer­tain­ly work with you as best I can, on mak­ing sure the bracelet you pur­chase fits. No mat­ter the size I have no prob­lem cus­tomiz­ing a bracelet for you. And I...

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