Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Fun Stuff

I have been playing with the keychain idea for a few weeks now and I am having a good time using up my orphans. Yet I still have many more......Maybe I will just keep making keychains and find a few places to put them so that I can just keep making them til I run out of orphans.
What do you think?

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Could not stop myself

Okay, I have a house full of animals, both 2 legged and 4 legged. The one that get's into the most trouble is my daughters cat Dunkin! My daughter want's the Christmas tree up so started hauling things from the attic on Thanksgiving night. Friday she got the tree together and what appears napping in the very middle branches? Yup there he is ....no wonder he answers to Dunkin no no no


Each time I start a new piece of work I have a wonderful stash of the beads I want to use. Often , well alway's I have leftovers when I am done. Seedbeads go into my beaded paintings so they are never wasted. The problem lies with accent beads. There is never enough left for another project, often times I have just one or two or three of a particular bead. Over the course of years I have found I have box after box of these orphans. Sometimes I find a nice bead I can use as a focal point, some times I have 2 that can be turned into a pair of earrings but more often than not these orphans just sit in the box waiting. Yesterday I was brainstorming for some easy , quick items I could make up for my Etsy shop just so I can post something new frequently during the holiday's. I came up with this keyring and it's perfect for all the little odds and ends, as long as I can co-ordinate my colors, the accent beads do not have to be the same. Whether I have one or two or three different types, if the colors match, I can use them. Since last night I have made 5 keyrings on this little bit of experimentation and finding a way to make use of the orphans makes me so very happy!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

Just a short post to wish each of you a Happy Thanksgiving and wonderful Holiday time in general. Whether your holiday's are quite, at home with family or filled to the brim with parties and company, enjoy them all, stay happy , stay safe and keep your loved ones close.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Sleeping through it all

I have not updated in several months again and I am ashamed! But I have good reasons. First I lost my Cable and internet due to all the medical issues. My daughter's phone is "our internet modem" and I try not to take advantage of that and just use it quickly to post items in my shop. No browsing time because I don't want to use up too much of her gigabites or whatever it is she pay's for when we are online.
Second I just plain old don't feel good and spent more hours in bed than out. I should have had my first surgery by now but of course.....there are school aged kids living with me. In September my grandson brought me home a cold. By the first week in October it turned into a sinus infection, by the third week of October it was bronchitis and by the first week in November I was borderline pneumonia. So I am still sitting here coughing and gagging, it takes a long time for me to get over it. At this point there will be no surgery until after the holidays. So between sleeping and creating I am just filling my Etsy shop as best I can with prayers for holiday sales. Just maybe a miracle will strike and I can get my Cable and internet back after the holiday season is done. I would love to watch a tv show. Although I have caught up on years of reading I haven't had time for. Hope everyone is well and getting ready to have great Holiday's!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

A quick update

This is a new picture of Alex. He is still very much missing his best friend. He spends most nights laying at the top of the stairs just watching and waiting, not realizing Morgan's not coming home. Just makes me want to bundle him in a blanket and carry him around.

I actually just stopped for a quick update. I saw the new surgeon on Thursday and while I do not know much yet I do know Henry has to be removed from my head. The increase in size has the tumor pressing on my brain. That is the cause of the daily headaches and dizziness and some problems with the left side of my body. I don't know when I will be having this surgery yet. This surgeon is very , very thorough. He wants copies of every MRI I have had on my brain and back since 2004. He want's new MRI's on my entire spine. Once he has all this testing and information gathered I will have another appointment with him to see where we are headed. Now back to my sequins.....

Monday, September 12, 2011

Am I really?

Doing this in the middle of September????? Yes I am. The fact is I have several reasons one of which I told you last post. People will be holiday shopping soon. I do know not everyone is like me and waits until Christmas week. Second of all...I have been tracking my sales and when I really look, out of the last 10 sales, 7 of them were for ornaments. Not Christmas but still, ornaments.
Third, they make great party favors, different than the norm but in order to do a bulk order even for a small party, I need time.

So I am putting aside the amulet bags and pictures for a bit and working on ornaments so they are in the shop and ready to go!!

A great way to be spending a lovely , sunny September day!

Saturday, September 10, 2011


I listed my newest bag this morning, some ornaments over the last few days. Trying to stay focused as I watch the medical bills pile up on my desk. Yuck!!!
In the few day's since I posted last we have been making progress, I have my surgeon appointment this week. We got the all clear for Tori to start once again so she has several appointments set up over the next few weeks so we are at least once again striving forward.

Of course at the same time this is a moment where my stomach starts to knot. The pile of bills I am looking at are just from what I have had done this past two months, I will have another pile after the surgeon visit and 2 more piles when Tori starts her appointments so I am looking at being lost at a sea of medical debt on top of everything else.

That means keep my blinders on and work straight forward on my product and list it, advertise it, list it , shout it out, list it...yup that's the idea. If I could ask the world to do anything for me I would ask that you share my link. Yes I know that it's hard enough to keep your own shop out there but there is nothing else I would or could ask for other than a Jeanie in a Bottle that could crinkle her nose and blink her eyes and a pile of cash could appear on my desk!

Happy September! www.debsparkles.etsy.com

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

It's not too Early

I have alway's been one of those people who fights working on Christmas before we even hit Halloween. This year I have decided I need a change of attitude and am beginning to work on projects for my shop now. Maybe I will see some Christmas sales this year. Typically I have nothing before Christmas but a number of sales in January. Maybe if I start now it will make a difference.

I haven't posted in a few weeks because I have been in a quandry over a number of things going on in my life. First I am still worried sick about my granddaughter. We still haven't gotten any farther with things because she just keeps getting sick with one infection after another. I am told this is very normal in a person who suffers such a severe case of mono and it could take even another year before she stabilizes to the point things can be done to help her get healthier.
She is such a tough kid and she has lived so long with so much pain it is now her normal and she deals with it very well on a daily basis. Maybe I also have something to do with that because she has watched me work so hard at controlling my own illness but someone who did not know her well would never , ever guess how sick she is. I get scared, I know it's an awful thought but I often wonder if help will come in time. I know that's not a thought I should have but it gets hard watching her try to be brave and not let the world see what a struggle every day is for her.

There are many things going on that are best left unsaid. I can tell you I just recently went through the hoops seeing my MD and my Neurologist. I had lot's of blood work, a stress test, and some MRI's. For the most part things are looking good, I have made slow but steady progress and next week I will have been back to work part time for a full year. I am very proud of that fact. Now here comes the but...........
Remember Henry? Henry the tumor that had to be left in my head. Henry who takes the blame every time I do something stupid or forget something important or fall down when I'm standing still. Yup that one.
All of the sudden Henry has decided to double in size after 6 years of doing nothing. So my neurologist say's I have to see a neurosurgeon. I asked if this was really a big deal and the answer was yes. The fact that it is growing presents the threat of it attaching to my brain. I won't know until I see the surgeon but neurologist thinks it needs to come out now before it has a chance to change.
The upside? This surgery is a piece of cake compared to what I went through with the Chiari Surgery. My mom had surgery for a brain aneurysm and say's that it was not at all painful.
Healing time is maybe 4 to 6 weeks after surgery, wonderful as compared to the 6 years it took after Chiari surgery.
The downside? As I just said above, I have been back to work for a full year. I have made decisions and plans on how to move forward with my life and this may through a monkey wrench into everything. I am afraid of losing everything once again just when I am trying to pull it altogether. I"m angry. I'm angry that once again when I have taken one step forward I am going to be pulled two steps back. But I will get over it. I am just getting a bit tired of spinning my wheels. But then again I will be sporting my 3rd crewcut so in about 6 months my hair will be soft and all my own color of grey once more ;o)

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Gone Fishin'

My newest painting finally finished. These last few weeks have been so crazy I have not been able to work consistently. I hate that because I am trying so hard to focus on getting my product amounts raised in my shop. I am getting there slow but sure, but can't seem to concentrate being constantly pulled in 10 different directions. The last few nights I have spent hours and hours just reading on Etsy about the changes with "relevency" I have read blog posts, forum posts, advice, comments and I don't get it and it is driving me crazy!!!!
Then I wonder if I should be making some changes. But what? Years ago I sold well on Ebay. That does not happen anymore. I just sink money I don't have into listing fees and get nothing out of it. I was on Zibbet for a year without a single sale. I have looked at Artfire a few times and I am just not comfortable with it. I have talked with my brother about starting to just list my items on my own website but that costs money and I really like the fact that my website not only gives me the opportunity to lead people to my Etsy shop with a small sampling of what I make , it costs me very little in fees per year since my brother built and hosts it.
Decisions, decisions, decisions!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Tough Decisions

Today my son had to make one of the toughest decisions of his life and put his baby to sleep. Actually no baby, Morgan was 12. A Bull Mastif/pit bull mix she has been his companion since she was 8 weeks old and fit in one hand. Who knew she would grow to be a 110lb horse bigger than my oldest daughter. Her breeds have many health problems but she has been strong and happy and loving right up to about 2 months ago when she started to cough and her lungs started to sound like pnuemonia. She seemed to get over it quickly but this last few weeks she has declined rapidly. She has had a problem with hip dysplasia, common to both breeds, and tumors, cancer is also common to her breeds. Any way she got to the point she could not walk, would not eat, just slept, we would have to carry her out side to do her business a few times each day. Last Friday, she needed a bath so she could go to the vet Saturday morning but the tub hurt her so bad. My daughter ended up climbing in the tub so Morgan could lay across her for some comfort and this is how she got bathed. Saturday the Vet layed out the options and let TJ know he alone had to decide. Gave the dog a shot and some pills for pain. For several day's she seemed to rally, was eating, walking enough to get outside under her own power and was happy just to hang with TJ. Until today when he got home and found her in really bad shape, scooped her up and took her back to the vet. Between the hips and legs, the respiratory problems and the cancer she was bleeding internally and he realized he had to do the right thing for her.
He say's to me, Mom how do I make this decision, she is going to be mad at me.
I said, No TJ she will love you forever for ending her pain,. her job here is done.
End of story.
I am sharing this with you because in truth, I am as heartbroken as my son, I loved this dog and even though I knew this was how it had to be it still hurts and I needed to tell someone that.
Thank you for listening

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Wow...It's Done!

Wow is what I have to say. No I have more but this experiment has been quite the learning process. Start with the background. I alway's do the background color's in acrylic paint. I wanted to give an underwater effect but I am not a painter so experimented with watercolor's. Everyone that has kids in the house has some kind of watercolor's laying around. I did not know whether or not the canvas would absorb it but it did with enough water which also managed to create that streaky light and dark underwater look to it. As you know I started the picture with just a basic couple of lines drawn for the sand castle and added the different features of the castle as I went along. The ton's of light brown seedbeads and bugles I used on the castle were taken from a destroyed vintage gown and let me tell you they are tiny. For every two beads I strung I threw one away because it would not fit over my thinnest beading needles. This was a very long, time consuming process. Everything on the ground and around the castle I added as I thought of it, you can tell by the cartoon quality of the fish, I can't draw. I haven't been near the ocean or a see since I was a very little girl but I often dream about the day I get to visit Hawaii and what I would find on the floor under the water. Of course the gorgeous colored water polished rocks will be an instant draw so I pulled out bunches of semi precious gemstone chips in earthy colors to add to the castle wall. There has to be broken shells laying about so we needed some mother of pearl chips on the castle. I needed greenery but did not want to overwhelm what space I had so just used my seedbeads to put some vines here and there then pulled out a baggie full of acrylic flower odds and ends I have never found a use for. There has to be snail and other life living down there so I used a bag of tiny shells that I have been hoarding for a long time. And of course we need pearls. Couldn't seem to draw a good enough clam or oyster but why can't we just have some pearls? So I added a bunch of the dyed freshwater pearls that I accumulate because I looooove freshwater pearls.

After all of this work had been done I realize I had forgotten the 2 inch rule. In order to have a canvas stretched properly, you must have 2 inches of bare canvas all the way around. My daughter came up with binding the sides with row's of seedbeads and turn it into a wall hanging. I thought it was worth trying so used a blue blanket binding stitched into place with rows of seedbeads, added tabs to the top to put a dowel through and it worked! It measures 11" by 14", the back is not perfect. While I work wonders with a needle and thread and pile of beads I haven't done so well mastering needle and thread and material. But it's okay. I used a layer of felt on the back. Of course I needed sparkle, we are under the sea, so a little bit of fabric glitter paint, several layers of acrylic varnish and everything is securely in place and I am ready to list this!

Sunday, July 24, 2011


I have been on a crazy schedule these last few day's and expect I will be for the summer so I am thinking of small, quickly done items to work on. Also looking for way's to keep a good attitude so what could be more perfect than a 6"x6" beaded painting of the Chinese Symbol for Happiness!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

New work

Hi there! I have an awful lot of stuff going on and most of it, not good. Not going to go into it but I will say that I am once again trying to keep my mind on my work. I have an awful lot to think about and one of those things is trying to find the right direction to keep my mind in to produce and list for sale as much work as I can. I need a few miracles which will only happen when I start to sell faster than I produce but in the mean time......I'm trying to keep producing.
I have once again started putting work in both my Etsy shop and my Ebay Auction. I know, I know, I get very discouraged with Ebay but I have to keep trying. Any way, I have not finished putting my Underwater painting together, just don't seem to find the room to work but I will get it done. This picture above is an Amulet bag I just finished tonight. Can't seem to get a good pictures but it's gorgeous. So I listed it on Ebay, I took alot of extra pictures so if it doesn't sell it will be easy enough to slide over to my Etsy store. I just last week started working 6 day weeks for the busy summer season, cross your fingers for me, it is too much for me but I want to hang in there, at the same time I am once again going through alot of junk with my Dr.s.
I know I haven't done a Tori update in a while, that's simply because there isn't much to update, she keeps getting sick, we did find out when she was supposed to have surgery she got that ear/sinus/throat infection because she seems to have had a relapse on the mono so she is still as alway's very infection prone. Add that to , we still have no answers on the thryroid. I keep saying I want an answer and none is forthcoming. All her new testing has been held up with more insurance problems so it's looking like it will be the end of summer before we start getting help again to get this poor kid straightened out. Maybe we can be hospital roommates because between the two of us this is going to be a rough end of year.
Any way, I probably don't make alot of sense right now but as I said, I have got a ton of crap going on that I am trying to deal with and I'm not doing a real good job at the moment. Just going to stop thinking and go play with my beads some more. Hope everyone is enjoying summer so far!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Just a little more

Just a little more work and this will be done. I am having such a good time adding odds and ends from my stash. We ton's of seedbeads, gemstone chips, mother of pearl chips, freshwater pearls, some tiny seashells, acrylic flowers, lustered acrylic beads, now painting and finishing off edges! This is a really heavy piece and I am trying to decide how to finish it. I did not leave enough raw canvas on the edges to stretch it properly. My daughter say's I should sew it to a backing and use dowels turning it into a wall hanging. That might be a good idea if it's not too heavy for the dowel. hmmmmmm

Saturday, July 9, 2011

A little more progress

I have to work tonight. During the summer months the store stays open late on Friday and Saturday because our town is full of tourists right up until the 1st week of September when the horse racing is done. That means I will set this aside and not get back to it for a few days. So, yesterday I started some Dr. appointments and so far I don't have good news and got a bit stressed . Well we all know when I get stressed I lock myself in the studio and Bead. So here is what we have tonight. Some fish to call the castle home, a little bit of greenery started for underwater plants and just starting on the ocean floor. There has been no part of this picture preplanned so I am adding as idea's come to me. I have a feeling I will be working on it a while because I have alot to think about. It's not so much that I don't expect to run into different health problems, I know I will for the rest of my life since my diseases of Chiari and Syringomylia will never go away but....we are still fighting to get my granddaughter healthy, still hitting one brick wall after another. I need to know she is fixed before I let Dr.s start playing on me again. .....
AlyGator........This is going to be a beaded painting, just haven't had the canvas stretched yet, I love it when you comment, sadly I still can't get blogger to let me respond to comments on my own blog posts....sigh.....

Thursday, July 7, 2011

A progress shot

I thought tonight was a good time to show you the progress I have made on this. My castle is pretty much complete. I am adding fish, some underwater plants and some more variety of colored gemstone chips to the ground. That's all I have planned out so far. I think this one is going to take me a while but I am truly having fun with it.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

To live like an 8 year old

Oh to be an 8 year old with the biggest worry on your mind is whether the water is going to be to cold!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy 4th to all

Hope you had a great holiday!! I had to work during the day and of course once I got home the pain in my legs and feet was so bad I could not totter off to the park to watch fireworks. That was a bit disapointing because I love them but that's life and I will pay for my decision to work in way's that I never thought of. That's okay , I got to see pictures Liz took and she is a good photographer so hoping to steal some pictures once she gets them up.

I'm sure your wondering why this picture up here. This is my son TJ and his girl Liz. Yesterday was TJ's 27th birthday. He is my baby so I am feeling a bit melancholy not to mention a little old ;o) Any way, it's hard to get a good picture of these two and I just really liked this one.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Help is no Help at all

I have grumbled several times over the last month because something isn't right with blogspot. Now, when I sign in I can go to my dashboard, I can read other peoples post and now comment on them. Then I go to view my blog. It say's at the top I need to sign in. ?? I am signed in, that's how I got here. I see people have commented on my post but I cannot respond to the comment. If I try it asks me what account I want to sign in with. If I click google account and sign in again....it brings me back to my dashboard. over and over.
Well I got tired of trying to find a solution and went to the help section. A number of people are having these problems and the few who commented with suggestions and possible solutions did not work for me. So I guess at this time there is no fix.

I feel really bad, if you have left a comment on my post, I did take the time to read it. I did try to respond but its just not working..........

Sunday, June 26, 2011

My quite time

Saturday morning found me not feeling well at all. Sometimes when I know I'm in for a bad day I use my head and just spend my time alone in my studio with my critters, my tv and my beads. I knew I could not concentrate on much so decided to continue on making my simple summer chokers and here is what I accomplished. Doesn't seem like much for a full day of solitude but when you know how much time is involved in the simplest of necklaces then you realize it is actually a good amount of work. May be I should do it more often. Sure would fill up my shop faster.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Friday Nights

I love Friday Nights. I have had the day off and spent the day doing my laundry for the next work week. My evening is mine because I have Saturday off too. That means I can stay up as late as I want, start new creations, watch silly tv shows. So I am starting a new picture, I actually have done a few necklaces over the last few day's and NEED to start a new painting.
I am making a sand castle. This one on raw canvas. I have a ton of it having collected it over the years for different projects but could not use it for my pictures because I can't use a regular embroider hoop with it. My mom gave me a square scrolling embroidery frame the other day and it is perfect. The slits for my canvas are the perfect size. When the frame is all together I have just the right amount of work area and I can roll a good amount of canvas so that when I need to I just scroll it up or down . I am tickled about this. Now I don't have to wait until I have money to buy stretchers and have them done for me, I can make pictures and have them stretched as I can.
I have not yet decided on the background for this, either it will be setting on the beach or underwater with a few beaded fishes coming home, I will decide as I go along.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Summer Jewelry

It's officially summer now. Sadly I am not excited. I have alway's loved summer, the warmer the better. Since I got sick, I don't do so well, seem to feel lousy alot in the summer and that makes me sad. Ironically, I just spent two day's cooped up in my house because I seem to have given myself a little case of food poisoning. Feeling better today though and decided it's is time to spend a few day's whipping up quick and easy summer chokers. I am working on a goal of getting my shop back up to 100 items and more would be great. Hard to do when I'm working on my amulet bags and pictures but a handful of simple summer stuff will help alot.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Finished and Listed

I guess I have found the key to getting alot of product done for me. I am still going through a ton of bad stuff at home between problems with my daughter, worries because we are still in limbo with Tori, not feeling good, on and on and on.....Seems the more stressed out I get the more I try to focus on my beadwork and block out the rest of my life. I've only spent a few day's on this Carousel Horse, finished, varnished and listed it in my Etsy shop today. Now I am sitting here going through my pile of pictures deciding what I want to do next. Hmmmmm. I guess there are a few good things about being stressed alot ;o)

Thursday, June 16, 2011


Something is still really wrong with blogspot. When I sign in I get my dashboard, I can read other blogposts. I can post my own new post. I am signed in. But.....when I click to view my blog....it say's "sign in". I can read my post but if I try to reply to a comment...it asks me to sign in, so I sign in again, type my reply and click. It show's my post as "anonymous" and when I click again......it disappears. So long story short, this has been going on for a number of weeks and I can't seem to get it too change. If you commented, I have replied but it just won't stick!!!
Is any one else having this issue??

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Summer memories

Sorry, I will never understand why my pictures end up sideway's or upside down when they are perfectly upright in my documents. Any way, my next beaded painting will be a carousel horse. At some point this summer, some of my work will be displayed in the Art Gallery in Soave Faire. So to that end I think it would be only fitting to do some pictures that connect with the area. Growing up we had an old fashioned park with rides and swimming and food carts. One of the most memorable things for me was the Carousel. Many years later the park closed and the city of Saratoga Springs bought the carousel, restored every piece and then set it up in one of our local parks. It is still operating there and I love to watch the little ones ride it. So now to work on my Carousel Horse.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Saratoga Artfest

Today was our Town's Artfest. All over town, artists working, singer's singing, musicians playing. All week long it's been hot, the sun has been as bright as could be. This morning I woke up to rain. And more rain. I was set up in front of the store I work in , Soave Faire. The point was to bring attention to our full art department, a lot of people are unaware how extensive our art supply is and many don't know we carry some nice jewelry making supplies. So rain or no rain I set up my little card table, put lot's of samples of the different types of beading I do and spent a few hours beading and chatting with the few people who wandered by between the rain drops. The weather was a downer and truly cut down on the amount of foot traffic we should have seen but I enjoyed myself any way. I find the older I get the easier it is to talk to people and I love any opportunity to show off my beading skills!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Summer Bouquet

My new picture is done and I have to tell you I am so very happy with it! I get teased alot because I like alot of sparkle so I did not use one tiny bit of glitter in this picture. Oh I was so very tempted but I made myself stay away from the glitter paint and instead did some dry brushing with some antique white. Not perfect, I haven't done any drybrushing in a while and I find the brushes I have are less than perfect for the job but I still ended up with the effect I wanted so it's done and listed to my total satisfaction.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Loving my work

I'm feeling productive tonight, even though I worked today I managed to list a new wish bag in my Etsy shop tonight, and have spent the evening working on my newest beaded painting. This one is progressing really, really slowly but I am okay with that because I am loving the way it's coming out. As I sit here stitching my beads into place I am imagining what I want to add to the purple background to soften it up a bit. I used purple because of the colors that will be in all the flowers by the time I'm done but I am thinking if I do some dry brushing with white paint, very softly, it's going to subdue it to just the right shade. I have so many pictures in my head that I want to do these beaded painting's of, I will never find the time to get at half of them so I'll keep stitching.

Giveaway Winner

Today is June 1st, the day we pick the winner of my amulet bag giveaway. Sadly, even though I advertised as best I could I only got comments from a few people and only one commented on my shop. Donna from DZ Fantasy did comment ( a bit too nicely) but she is a great person, an amazing fiber artist and I am happy she will own this bag. If your ever in the market for a gorgeous little fairy, check out www.dzfantasy.etsy.com. Her work is gorgeous. I am the proud owner of 2 of her pieces and plan on having more when I can.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Imaginative Creating

I'be been working on this for a few day's, have no clue from moment to moment what I am going to do. I'm just having some fun. I have an idea for a few embellishements and a good idea how to elongate the bottom. Unfortuneatly I am stuck until I can get a piece of ultrasuede for the back to continue turning it into a necklace. I will finish what I can and then put it aside until I get some ultrasuede. I love playtime.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Happy Memorial Day

No pictures today just a wish for a wonderful day to everyone, make sure and take a minute or two to say thank you to the soldiers who gave their lives for this country. I am very lucky. I have many service people in my family still with us. I want to say thank you to each of them:
My dad, retired Navy
My brother Scott, retired Marines
My brother in law James, retired Army
My nephew Corey, currently Army, Afghanistan
My cousins, Amy and Todd, Army , currently Iraq.
My prayers for their safety and hoping they are all home again soon.

Saturday, May 28, 2011


Something weird is going on here at Blogspot. Yesterday I came on and tried to post this and it cut me off. I tried reading other people's updates and a few I wanted to leave a comment on, kept bringing me back to the sign in page, over and over, never was able to leave comments. When I tried to sign out, I couldn't. I would sign out and come back and I was still signed in, over and over and still happening.

Any way, you know I love to push the envelope and I love to play with things that are kind of out of the box. I love polymer clay and I love big necklaces. The color's on my newest batch of clay cabs I just had to try a big piece and this is where I am at right now. Once I'm done with the seedbead embroidery I want to add a few more embellishing beads. Not quite sure yet. But once it is done to my satisfaction I will be at a standstill for a while until I can purchase some ultrasuede for the back. I found 2 shops on Etsy that sell bags of scrap which would be perfect for me since anything I need ultrasuede for is usually fairly small but finances demand I wait on it.


Tuesday, May 24, 2011

A Love Story

Please meet Amy and Todd. Actually I have told you about them before. Amy is my cousin. She is also in the Army. A number of years ago, Amy was sent to Iraq. While she was there she met Todd. After their tour was done and they were given leave, we had a wedding. A wonderful fun wedding. Shortly after, Amy was sent back to Iraq for her 2nd tour and Todd was sent elsewhere. Amy was back in the states a bit under a year. Her tour was done but since it ended early she was told there may be a possible chance she would be sent back again. In fact that is exactly what happened, Amy who I am in awe of is now serving her third Tour of duty in Iraq, this time though, Todd was assigned to go again too and they are working together and able to see each other on a regular basis. I think if you have the gut's and self-less loyalty to your country to do this job than being able to do it with your spouse is a very small but wonderful blessing. This picture they are reading a newspaper from home while taking a bit of a break together.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Tori Update

Taking a few moments because I know the whole family want's to know WTF is going on. Well I am asking myself the exact thing. My nervous breakdown aside here is how our last few day's have gone. Obviously we have spent the last 3 weeks stressing. We have an MD, a neurosurgeon, and a Dr. of Internal Medicine and Oncology that tell us without a doubt, Tori has Papillary Thyroid Cancer. We end up choosing to have surgery now at Albany Med just because we need to get the ball rolling on all these different illnesses. Tuesday and Wednesday she is scheduled for pre op testing. The Oncologist wants one more scan to see if there are changes re: any growth, since the last one. Thursday we get a call from the Oncologist, the scan they does not show anything ??????? Why??? She does not know. We call her MD because he gets copies of everything...He does not know what is happening. So after a few hours of debate it is decided not to have surgery Friday morning. Before the surgery was scheduled she already had an appointment Saturday at Albany Med for a visit with the Neurosurgeon and it is decided that she should have all new testing done at Albany med. Friday afternoon, Tori spikes a fever, her ears and throat start hurting and by bedtime she is really sick. So Albany Med say's no testing until we find out what's wrong. We end up instead going to Saratoga ER to find out she has an ear infection, an upper respiratory infection and a sinus infection. The sinus infection alone will hold things up due to the Sinus disease she has had for so many years makes it really tough to clear up. Bottom line is no testing till she has had another course of antibiotics.
So we go back to hanging in limbo again and waiting some more. Heather told me last night she really thinks we need to go back to our original decision and take her to Boston because we just don't know which way to turn and don't feel like any progress is being made. In the mean time Tori gets sicker and sicker. Her weight loss is now up to about 42 pounds and I hate what I am thinking but I am so horribly exhausted from this whole past 9 months of all this that I am having a real problem being the positive person I try to be and can't stop from wondering if she is going to get through this or not at the rate we are going.
I'm sorry, I don't mean to be so negative but truly enough is enough.
I will post when she is better enough to start over and let you know what we are going to do. I think I am inclined to agree with Heather, let's revert back to the original plan, get her to Boston and pray we get better help because I am feeling truly negative about what is going on here .

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Getting through the week

My new painting is done, this one is tiny, only 6" by 6". I wanted to see if I enjoyed doing a small one and of course I chose to do a butterfly. Next I would like to do a really, really large one but that could be a problem. Once I start, I don't want to put it down until it's done and to do a really large one would make me very, very impatient to see it finished. I listed this in my Etsy shop tonight. I think I'm just reaching for things to keep myself busy both physically and mentally. Tori started pre op testing today, tomorrow she has to have bloodwork and a chest xray then we just get through to Friday morning. I know I will feel better once this first surgery is done! I will post Friday afternoon when I have news of how the surgery went.

Mean time, I don't seem to be getting much of a response to my give away so please share my link with any one who might like a chance to win the Amulet bag.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

My First Giveaway

Well my first give away on my own blog that is. But it is time and of course I have an ulterior motive. It's time to get real, reorganize, freshen up and start getting consistent sales in my Etsy Shop. I like most people struggle paycheck to paycheck for the bare minimum. I have even been able to keep up with that. I would work all day, pay the rent and then choose , do I have lights or do we eat? Do I pay the cable bill or do we eat? Who needs shampoo?

Of course since I got sick it has been harder than ever. Now with all the health issues we need to deal with for my grand daughter I need to know I can make sure the basic bills are paid. We need a roof over our head, we need electricity. I can not have a sick kid in the house and not know if it is going to be to hot/cold for her to be here. I have to pay cable. Wish I could say otherwise but not only do I need internet access for the Etsy shop, I can't have a kid being down for weeks at a time without tv and where I live if you don't have cable, you don't have tv. Tried those boxes when they came out but the wiring in my neighborhood is so bad the boxes don't work at all. I need to make sure she eats well and I do not qualify for any help since I returned to work part time. All that being said, my parents taught me early on to never look for a handout. If you want or need something work for it. I have alway's been ready, willing, sometimes if not alway's..able.

This is where you come in ;o)

I am giving away this black amulet bag necklace. The bag measures 1 1/2" by 1 3/4". It is open topped and on the front is a blue marbled polymer clay cab. The fringing is branched. Each part of the branch in a clear and blue glass teardrop. The fringe falls just under 4" at the middle point. The neckchain is just over 20" with seedbeads and the same glass teardrops used in the fringe and closes with a silver colored basemetal toggle clasp.

Here is what I need. Visit my Etsy Shop : http://www.debsparkles.etsy.com/

Take a look around and then come back and in the comments section give me a "mini" critique.

What do you like in the shop? What do you not like in the shop? What should I be concentrating more on that I can actually get sales on. Don't just be nice. Be honest. I can't grow and get better at this without true feedback. (Except for pictures. I suck at pictures no matter how I try)

Make sure to leave your email address in your comment. I will be putting everyone's address in a jar and on June 1, 2011 I will have Tori draw a winner.

Late night fun

I can't sleep so I have been reading blogs, my favorite pastime besides beading, and found a few more to follow. Wouldn't it be great if I could create a career out of reading blogs?
Any way, I have been doing alot of thinking today, yes again, with everything coming up with Tori, I need to really start promoting my shop better and if you know me, well, you know it's a really weak spot. I am not good with self promotion. That being said, all my thinking gave me an idea. I am going to do my very first give-away. Tomorrow night, I will post a picture of what I will be giving away and how I want to do it so watch for a post tomorrow evening.
I'm excited about doing this, have wanted to for a while but just needed the right time and motivation. Meanwhile, I'm going to go think some more and just maybe fall asleep. Good night my friends.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Tori Update

Some good news in a weird way. Tori will be having surgery for Thyroid removal on Friday , May 20. I know that's the weird part, how is this good news? It is because it is really hard for all of us to sit here doing nothing but waiting while this cancer is growing no matter how slowly inside her.
Our plans have changed though. While we really wanted to take her to Shriners, that's not working out really well, too long of a wait time for us. Too far away from home for family, no transportation for taking turns between who is with Tori and who is home with Josh. We have no car and we just can't see leaving the hospital after surgery to make her ride home on a bus or train.
So, she will be having surgery at Albany Medical Center which is okay. The oncologist, Dr. Valentine has privileges there and will be doing her surgery. Her neurosurgeon, Dr. Amato is at Albany Medical so he will be there, funny part is the day she was to have her next appointment with him was Saturday, the 21st so that makes things really conveniant for everything right now. Barring any unforeseen problems she will have surgery Friday morning and be released on Sunday morning. So this week is preop testing and the waiting will be over before we know it. I know we have alot ahead of us but I will be so relieved when this is out of her. Maybe that doesn't make a lot of sense considering she will stay have the radioactive iodine treatment ahead of her then the surgery on her back and head but at least some action is finally being started. That helps me breath a bit easier.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Out of Fear

It sometimes truly amazes me that even the worst things in life bring us something good. Obviously with everything going on in my life my beadwork has once again suffered. I was sitting in my studio the other night thinking about my Tori and was looking for a way to bring something good forward. I took a little square of paper and wrote down a little prayer and rolled the paper up in a tiny scroll. We are alway's told to write down our dreams , our wishes, our affirmations and keep them close by. Then I got to thinking, when I am making my amulet bags, I alway's determine the size by asking myself, What could I keep in this bag and it hit me. I should make myself a mini amulet bag just big enough to put my little scroll of paper in. And that's just what I did, I made a bag just about 1" by 1" and put my prayer in it and a new idea was born. I am going to make a bunch of these. I am naming them, " My wish bag for the love of Tori" I can do two or three a week and put them up in my shops, maybe get some new sales flowing. I recently got a large lot of seedbeads from someone I buy from on Ebay, every once in a while he does a close out on colors that are not so popular at the moment, so I have alot of beads to use at the moment.

Just thought it would be good to show a bit of the normal Debsparkles tonight.

Before I close this post though I wanted to say, a number of people have contacted me through here and twitter and my Etsy team who have some experiance with what Tori is going through and have given me some very positive feedback , you know who you are and I thank you so very much. The positive info makes things a bit easier for us right now and it is truly the stuff Tori needs to hear.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Tori Update

I am not sure if this is so much as an update as a chance to define the information I have already given you. After a visit with Dr. Elizabeth Valentine , Dr. of Internal Medicine and Oncology, we have the following definates.
Tori has Papillary Thyroid Carcinoma. This is the most common form of thyroid cancer, tends to hit woman more than men with no real reason or cause known. It is a slow growing cancer, and the most treatable. Next week Heather and Tori are taking a trip to Boston, Mass to the Shriners Hospital. At this time they will meet with case workers, the physician team that will be working on her and just get shown around the hospital in general. They will come home from this visit with a surgery date. She will have the thryoid removed and to be honest they can not tell until they are doing the surgery whether they must remove the entire thyroid or can just take the side infected by the cancer. Most surgeries end up with the entire thyroid being taken. After this surgery she should be home quickly, within a day or 2. Then for at least a week my house will basically be under quarentine. No friends, no people in and out, her mom and brother can not be here, this is due to risk of germs, as she will have a very, very , low immunity to the everyday germs we carry. I will be the only one she is exposed to at that time, better get my clorox bottles stocked up!
After a approx. 5 to 6 weeks healing time she will go back to the hospital. She will be administered radioactive iodine. Just a very small dose at first then a scan is done that will show any thryoid residue, active cancer cell, anything missed in the surgery. Then she gets the full dose and comes home again. This time my house will be under quarentine again even more so. Not because of germs, but because she herself will be radioactive and can share that with others. I cannot get any closer than 6 feet from her. She has to be in her room alone, the front bathroom must be for her use only. I will be stocking up on paper plates, cups and plastic forks , etc. I must wash her laundry seperate from anything else in the house. This should really get interesting. But the good news is doing it this way, she avoids things like coming home vomiting, or losing her hair and all that stuff we associate with chemo and radiation. She should heal pretty quickly, the real downfall is she will spend the rest of her life taking medicine to replace the hormones her thyroid provides naturally.
One week from Saturday she has an appointment with her neurosurgeon, this will be on hold until the thryoid cancer is taken care of but they will formulate the plan for the neurosurgery.
This is going to be a crazy time for all of us, Joshua will be with me while Heather is with Tori, when she is home I will have to take time off work here and there but we can only get through this one step at a time.

We did finally sit down this morning and tell Tori everything. She had a great birthday and to tell you the truth she took the news better than myself, Heather and TJ did. I guess because she in her own way knew. She has told more than one Dr., nurse, family member that she knew that something was really wrong with her. People need to learn to listen when a smart , self sufficient, tough kid cries for help.

I probably won't need to update again until next week at which time I should have surgery dates and more info from the Neurosurgeon. Until then I had better get busy beading like crazy and finding more way's to sell my jewelry because no matter how much help we get , this is going to be costly in many other way's So just keep those prayers coming. Love you all very much and we so appreciate all the support we have been getting from you right now.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Tori Update

I have delayed doing this update for several reasons. My heart is breaking right now and I am so full of anger I am having a problem keeping myself pulled together and Sunday is Tori's 15th birthday and we want it to be a good one so we are trying to keep some secrets til next week.
This week we got results from blood tests and the scan's Tori had on her throat. I'm sorry, I do not have the correct medical terms to put here right now, Heather hasn't given me the paper reports yet but Tori has a certain type of thyroid cancer. Before I give you details let me say that her M.D. tells us that this is a very treatable form with a high success rate. That's the good news. Now it goes down hill, and I can't tell you what will happen when or how all the Dr.s are going to co-ordinate what is the priority here . She will be seeing an Oncologist this coming week. Her M.D. says probably she will have the thyroid and Lymph nodes removed. After 5 or 6 weeks recovery time from the surgery she will have injections (I am sorry I can't remember what the name of this injection is) but supposedly it should kill any cancer or precancer cells that remain after the removal of the thyroid and lymph nodes. This avoids the need for any type of Chemo or Radiation therapy.
I worry how all this will be co-ordinated with the Neurological surgeries. We will have to try to be a bit patient a bit longer while this is all tackled by the involved Dr.s.

This is so very unfair , my anger is so over the edge. I cannot tell you how many times in the er this past winter Tori tried to tell these Dr.s what she felt in her throat. Even her own M.D. as much as we like him, when I took her for a visit with him in January we both tried to explain the pain in her throat and collarbone, I pointed out the fact that she was living on liquids because aside from the fact that she had no appetite she could not swallow. Every last one of them cut her off and would not listen. Her MD gave her Zoloft that day. My insides are shaking right now and my mind won't stop between figuring out to keep her happy and comfortable, wondering how we tell her this, as it is she is scared to death over the surgery on her back and head. She is going to need alot of care for a while and yes I am rambling so I will stop and I will update this post when I have the terminology to share with you and some kind of plan has been started.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Tori Update

Tori met with a neurosurgeon at Albany Medical Center today. First let me say, Heather and Tori both liked him very , very much. It was a very long visit. First he sat and listened to Tori tell him in her own words everything that has gone on for the last 7 months. He listened carefully, listened to the smallest detail. He had looked at all the films and reports before seeing her and was very unhappy with them. Tori's body spasm's involuntarily and did so often during all the CT's, MRI's and ultrasounds. But he was able to see them well enough to glean some basic information and after seeing Tori , took Heather into look at the films with him. Starting at the top, there is minimul extension of the cerebellar tonsils (her brain) but enough of an indication for him to believe if the spinal problems are not addressed properly now, she will be going through brain surgery for Chiari Malformation in 10 years.
She has a leak. The pressure from the bulging disk and syrinx in her back has caused so much pressure the in her neck area she is leaking cerespinal fluid. This fluid is accumulating in her skull and putting alot of pressure on her brain. The space below the bulging disk, is also causing an accumulation of fluid in that area. The "cyst" in her throat is actually a small tumor possibly "residual thyroid" tissue.
He will be operating on her back, doing what ever they do to relieve the bulging disc, draining the syrinx and putting a shunt in her head to drain the fluid accumulation on her brain. BUT,
before they make a positive game plan he wants proper pictures with dye. Not a full body MRI.
He wants one just of her brain. Then he wants one just of her Throat, He wants on just of the TSpine and last he wants one Just of the LSpine.
Heather also has to go get a referral from Tori's MD for a Thyroid Specialist because of course this is not the Neurosurgeons area.
Any way that is what we know today and after all these new tests are done Tori will see him again and and they will create an absolute game plan. In the mean time she has new prescriptions, pain meds, sleep meds, and I will update when we know more. Thanks guy's
If any one has any ideas how to keep a bedridden 14 year old entertained let me know.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Tori's Story

It is time to settle down and start our post's on my grand daughter. I have to start from the beginning for family that has been out of the loop. My Grand daughter Victoria is 14. Last September she was ill, it was bronchitis. For two weeks she got sicker and sicker and we ended up taking her to the Hospital Emergency room to find out she also had mononucleosis. That wasn't enough she was also having a CMV attack. CMV stands for Cytomegalovirus. The symptoms are severe , my daughter spent a month in the hospital with it while she was pregnant for Tori and obviously passed it on during birth. The funny thing is, someone can carry this illness their whole life and you only have one flare up where it makes you deathly ill. After this flare up, it never happens again. Go figure, Tori had her flare up in the middle of mono and bronchitis. During the winter months she was so very severely sick that it was frightening and required a number of trips to the emergency room. During one of these trips it was also discovered she had a large ovarian cyst on her right ovary. Under normal circumstances it was bad enough for surgery but with everything else going on in her body it was not possible so she just lived in constant illness and pain and then lost her insurance. My daughter fought to get it back to no avail and over the next few months we had more trips to the er. At this point she is a uninsured teenager and we got blown off 4 times. They gave me a diagnosis each time of "Generalized anxiety disorder" she got told she was having panic attacks, she was called a hypochondria, she was teased and put on Zoloft , an anti depressant. Zoom forward a few months, Tori is still very sick, she finally got over the bronchitis, and CMV attack, the mono subdued after 5 horrible months and then she got her insurance back. Now having insurance we get on the phone to all her Drs. this leads to visit's. Her gynecologist orders a new ultrasound. We have the results. During the time she was being called a hypochondriac, the large cyst on the right blew up on it's own leaving a mess of scar tissue and there is nothing to be done but guess what? She has a new cyst on the left ovary now. But it is very small so they are going to leave it alone and just watch it. Her MD decided that due to the fact that she had so much pain in so many places that she should have first of all some blood work. There was some suspicion of liver damage from the mono and some tests for thryoid because she has alot of trouble with swelling in her neck and pain in her collarbone area and trouble swallowing. We are still waiting for results of the blood testing. He also decided even though she has had an awful lot of testing she needed a full body MRI. We have the results from that. First, they found a large cyst at the base of her tongue kind of going down her throat, so the Dr. sent her for a CatScan on her throat and thyroid. We are waiting for those results, should have them on Monday. The next thing they found in the MRI is actually 2 problems. First she has a bulging disc and a large gap below the 2nd vertebrae between her shoulder blades. and she also has Syringomyelia. Syringomyelia is a condition of fluid filled tumors in the middle of the spinal cord. The symptoms are severe and disabling. There are several causes for it but the top one is Chiari Malformation. Those of you who know me or have followed my blog from the start know that I am disabled to the diseases of Chiari Malformation and Syringomyelia. There is no cure. Surgery on the Chiari stops the disease from killing us by squeezing our brain but the symptoms are life long and very much like those suffering from M.S. Any way, Tori has an appointment on April 22 with a neurosurgeon at Albany Medical Center. They will look at this MRI and do one on her brain. Mean while we wait. We know surgeries are coming but nothing changes the fact that my grand daughter at 14 may spend the rest of her life disabled by diseases that may have been caught much earlier if she wasn't being blown off as having Anxiety Disorder or being a hypochondriac. Not that it is any one's fault that she has these illnesses (except maybe me since I started this one) but maybe if caught a bit earlier it would have been good since it is known that the earlier in childhood the diagnosis, the better the prognosis. So as I said , we wait till the next test results and Dr. visits before we know more. I will update each time we get new info. In the meantime, I know I don't explain things really well so if you would like to get better info on Chiari Malformation and Syringomyelia please check this website: http://www.asap.org

Just one more I promise

This foolish cat was so intrigued playing with the bubbles in the bath he ended up falling in so he got a bath along with the grandson. Dunkie is no kitten but he has been full of mischief all week long.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Spring Fever?

Couldn't help myself, this cat is full of it this week!


My newest beaded painting was not done for sale. My son has alway's loved dragons. He is 27 now and still collecting all things dragon so I had to make him a beaded painting. I have to tell you this was my most difficult peice yet and I am not completely happy with it. It was hard with all the little twists and turns in each color. I had to follow through each shape in it's color and try to make the lines "flow". I have decided I do not like using dark background paint, even though I love the color it does not let the beadwork itself pop the way it should. The background should be just that, a background, and the beading is to be the star of the show. So I can say I truly am happy I attempted this because I learned just a few more lesson's to put on my "don't" list.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

I can't catch up

Sorry, my picture came out to small. A great deal of stuff going on right now and the cat is in rare form. He has decided he wants bird for lunch. This past week has been so hectic and heartbreaking. My father in law passed away last week and was buried with full military honor's on Monday. If you have never attended a Military funeral I have to tell you, if you arent' sobbing hard enough over the loss of a loved one, the soldiers at attention and the playing of taps topped off with folding the flag and passing it to a family member will turn you into a large puddle of tears. About the same time as all this was going on my sister in law got sick at work. Had to be driven home, my brother called her Dr. who sent her for a catscan and then she was taken by ambulance from the medical center to our biggest hospital. She has bleeding in her brain, the neurosurgeons are having a hard time finding out why and she has been laying in the hospital horribly sick for 8 day's now. And now, the reason for tonights post. My granddaughter has been ill since last September. We have gone round and round with tests, er visits, Dr's and we are doing it all again. So, trying to keep everyone who needs to know up to date on each new test and result we are going to "borrow my blog" for a bit and send everyone here for updates. So please bear with me if you see a number of posts talking about my grand daughter, it is for the benefit of family and friends who need to know what's going on. Every once in a while I will try to post something normal so you don't get tired of lousy news. ;o)

Friday, March 25, 2011

A lighter moment

I haven't had a good laugh for a while. I really needed one and today I got a really good one.
A few day's ago, my daughter broke her ankle. She is absolutely miserable, she is in the middle of job hunting and has a lot of stuff going on in general and this just suspended everything. It is a bad break, going to take alot of healing, may need some surgery after and of course she is hurting. A friend brought her to my house so she could visit and whine and I could see what I could do to help.
Well sometimes I can't help but be a smartass so I went to the craft stash, got out one of my sequined butterfly's and a bottle of glue and went to work. Then to add insult to injury I took a picture , posted it on my facebook with the tag line :"even a broken bone needs a little bling"

I while later she gets on facebook and see's it and after cussing me out a minute she types....
That's it , you got it.....Cast Dazzles by Debsparkles, a bit of bling for broken bones.

Any way this little bit of silliness gave us a much needed moment to forget about all the problems we are dealing with and just chuckle. If only for a few moments.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Finished in Bed

I have been in bed since this past Sunday, nothing major just a huge whack from my Chiari symptoms which happens when I am really overtired and stressed. It drove me crazy , not so much that I could not get up and go to work but I was worried about this custom order taking so much time so I grabbed extra pillows and a food tray and worked as best I could between the constant 2 hour naps. It is done!!! It's very pretty, very big, very time consuming but I do alway's love a challenge when it comes along and can't not try. I did make a seperate neck chain and a 7" wristlet chain so it is way to big to wear, she can carry it. I posted it and sent a convo for her to check it out so we shall see it's what she is happy with or not.

Saturday, March 19, 2011


I know, I know, I go from one extreme to the other. I'm gone for weeks then I'm here two nights in a row. But, I made so much progress on this bag since yesterday I wanted to show you before I got to much farther. The flowers on the bag are pretty easy, just glass leaves and a bunch of different colored glass teardrops stitched randomly around the front of the bag. The fringing is taking a lot longer. Instead of just a straight up and down fringe, I am using branch fringing to stay with the flower garden theme. So that means I have to string through a few times, counting and branching off into little shoots along the way. I know I won't finish tonight but I am going to get as far as I can. Then just fancy up the top of the bag and make a neckchain. I decided because this is going to be a heavy bag, heavy just with beads then add the Iphone, rather than a clasp at the back of the neck I am going to make it so the chain is completely seperate and hooks to the bag on each side. Might even make a second small one so she can carry it as a wristlet intead of around her neck. Hmmmm...

Friday, March 18, 2011

Working again

I do seem to be pulling myself together bit by bit. I am becoming more focused on my Etsy shop and researching some others. I admit, my day job takes a great deal out of me, even though I work only about 20 hours a week so I don't get much done on nights I have worked. On my day's off I tend to ignore things like housework and laundry so I can concentrate on getting items started. I don't normally like the fact that I will have 3 or 4 projects started at a time but do find, if they are started, when I get home and have rested a bit after working I will pick one up and spend a little bit of time on it. A slow way to get stock built up but it is working for me.
That is until last week. I got a message from a sweet lady who liked the bag I made that's in my avatar but she wanted one big enough to carry an Iphone. I have never seen an actual Iphone but I knew it was bigger than the largest bag that I have ever made and it was going to take alot of work. Any way, it has taken a full week of my free time (over 22 hours) just to weave the basic bag. Tonight I shall start weaving the little glass teardrops in to create the flowers. I have to stay focused on it so I can get it done in the time range I estimated to her which is 3 weeks. So this is what I will do until it's done and I will show you progress shots every few day's. Let's see if I finish in the alloted time ;o)

Friday, March 4, 2011

Something to share

No work progress today, no pictures to show but something I want to share. I have said I have been going through a tough time but not shared details. I won't now either but I have shed a lot of tears lately. Tears of pain. But today, my aunt sent me an email that helped me so much and let me shed a few good tears and I wanted to share it with you. I cannot give the author credit because I don't know who it is but I think if your a mom this will touch your heart.

The Invisible Mom

It all began to make sense--the blank stares, the lack of response, the way one of the kids would walk into the room while I'm on the phone and ask to be taken to the store. Inside I'm thinking, "Can't you see I'm on the phone?" Obviously not, no one can see if I'm on the phone, or cooking. or sweeping the floor, or even standing on my head in the corner, because no one can see me at all. I'm invisible. The invisible mom.
Some day's I am only a pair of hands, nothing more! Can you fix this? Can you tie this? Can you open this? Someday's I'm not a pair of hands, I'm not even a human being. I'm a clock to ask, "What time is it? I'm a satellite guide to answer, "What number is the Disney Channel? I'm a taxi for order, Right around 5:30 please.
Some day's I'm a crystal ball, "Where's my other sock? Where's my phone? What's for dinner?
I was certain that these were the hands that once held books and the eyes that studied history, music, and literature- but now, they has disappeared into the peanut butter, never to be seen again. She's going, she's going, she's gone!
One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the return of a friend from England. She had just returned from a fabulous trip and she was going on and on about the hotel she stayed in. I was sitting there, looking around at the others all put together so well. It was hard not to compare and feel sorry for myself. I was feeling pretty pathetic, when she turned to me with a beautifully wrapped package and said, "I brought you this". It was a book on the great Cathedrals of Europe. I wasn't exactly sure why she'd given it to me until I read her inscription: "With admiration for the greatness of what you are building when no one see's"
In the day's ahead I would read-no-devour the book. And I would discover what would become for me four life changing truths, after which I could pattern my work.

1) No one can say who built the great cathedrals, we have no record of their names.

2) These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see finished.

3) They made great sacrifices and expected no credit.

4) The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw everything.

A story of legend in the book told of a rich man who came to visit the cathedral while it was being built, he saw a workman carving a tiny bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and asked the man, "Why are you spending so much time carving that bird into a beam that will be covered by the roof ? No one will ever see it. The workman replied "because God sees.

I closed the book, feeling the missing piece fall into place. It was almost as if I heard God whispering to me, I see you. I see the sacrifices you make every day, even when no one around you does.
"No act of kindness you'be done, no sequin you'be sewn on, no cupcake you've baked, no Cub Scout meeting, no last minute errand is too small for me to notice and smile over. You are building a great Cathdral, but you can't see right now what it will become.
I keep the right perspective when I see myself as a great builder. As one of the people who show up at a job that they will never see finished, to work on something that their name will never be on.
The writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals could ever be built in our lifetime because there are so few people willing to sacrifice to that degree.
When I really think about it, I don't want my son to tell the friends he's bringing home for Thanksgiving, "My mom gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes homemade pies, then she hand bastes the turkey for 3 hours and presses all the linens for the table." That would mean I'd built a monument to myself. I just want him to want to come home. And then , if there is anything more to say to his friend, he'd say "Your gonna love it there..."

As mothers, we are building great cathedral's. We cannot be seen if we're doing it right. And one day, it is very possible that the world will marvel, not only at whate we have built, but at the beauty that has been added to the world by the sacrifices of invisible mothers.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

My Exotic Parrot

This bold , bright, beautiful bird is finished and I am so pleased with him! I have as usual an large amount of stuff going on in my life. I noticed that the rougher things get the harder I work on something if I am able to work and I have used this picture to think, let off steam and get rid of tension so it got finished quickly! Ready to post him in my Etsy shop and I am really super excited because last night I SOLD the Peacock. What a great lift that was. Ready to go sketch the next one.....

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Starting to look like something

I am having a great time with the bright bold colors on this bird that I would never ordinarily have a reason to touch. The funny part is everyone want this one. My granddaughter want's it. My daughter in law want's it. My grandson say's Grandma can I have this? I explained to him I was making it to try to sell in my Etsy shop and he say's, oh don't worry, I have $25.00 in my piggy bank and I will borrow more from mommy! (He is 8) I said well Josh, how about I make another one for you? He say's no Grandma I want an original.
Where did he ever learn that? ;o)

Monday, February 21, 2011

10 hours In

We have just about 10 hours of embroidery time into this so far, Not much done considering how much to do but enough to let me know that I like him. Bright and bold, my exotic parrot is definately not going to be able to camoflouge himself in the trees. Undecided about my background. I know I will bead the tree limb and branches but thinking I want to paint the blank area. I don't seem to like a fully beaded picture as much as one with parts of it painted,but I have some time to make a decision on that. I won't get too much more done until the end of the week, I am just to tired after work to accomplish must and need to take turns with some other work.