Thursday, May 24, 2018

Thankful Thursday #46

I am so thankful for so many things everyday.

You should try to find the blessing in any situation.  I am in the current situation of having my poor, sweet little dog recovering from surgery and getting caught back up on Etsy listings and jewelry making.  The blessing is I have gotten to spend quality and quantity time with my daughter, Sydney.

It has taken both of us to care for poor Mia.  We didn't have dogs until her, four years ago, so we didn't know how this would go and we I soon realized the bad habits we were in with me being home all day with these two sweet dogs.

Sydney really is my best friend and she was so busy with school this last semester I have actually enjoyed her having to stay in and help.  Is that terrible of me???  Well, she and her brothers are always on the go, even though they all live at home, so I will take what I can get!

I am thankful Mia is on the mend and time with my girl.  My human girl, that is.  The kids tease me all the time that the dogs are my favorite.  It has been a long running joke that they claim my middle child, Shane, is my favorite but I have told them many times I love them all the same.  He said not too long ago "It was a good run being the favorite until Mia and Maggie got here." 

I told them they were being silly, of course I love my children more, but these sweet little dogs can't talk back, love me no matter what, and are always here with me.  I realize they have no choice, but again, I will take what I can get!

Here are two of my favorite pictures of me and Sydney.

I had this as my profile picture on Facebook.  On the left is Sydney with me at my college graduation and a picture of her in her cap and gown photo session a few weeks ago.

Here are all three of my kids and me on vacation last year.

I will put the listings I have added on Etsy below.  I have my new peace sign "can i get an amen" necklaces, the glow in the dark cross charm necklaces. I have even added a listing for one of the amen charms and a choice of the glow in the dark charms.  I have a new design coming in next week and three more within the next 3 weeks and they are all the same 3/4" size and look really good with more than one on the chain.  I will be adding some bracelet choices too.

It has been a full time job the last couple of weeks, but look at this cute little face! 

She had her first physical therapy and laser therapy appointment yesterday.  She's been a trooper and finally got to remove the cone.  That thing would have driven me nuts!  I had to wear an electrical stimulator neck brace for a couple hours a day after my neck fusion a few years ago to make sure it all healed correctly so I think I empathize with her.

This is Mia and Maggie on my bed.  Yes, those are kitchen and dining room chairs I have put around my bed to make almost a play pen out of it. I know it looks ridiculous, but I am not fast enough to get her if she forgets she can't jump and they are used to being on my bed (she was trying to jump up to get me to let her up on it) so I just did this.  It looks like they are trying to figure out an escape, but when I get them down they just want right back up.

There are blessings in everything, though sometimes they are harder to find, they are there.

You can click here to get to my Etsy shop or click on the titles to go to the specific listing.

Peace Sign Custom Charm Necklace

Glow In The Dark Cross Charm Necklace

"Can I Get An Amen and Glow In The Dark Charm Necklace

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Thankful Thursday #45

I am so thankful for so many things everyday.

Want something fun and meaningful for your kids to wear this summer? 

I just got in my new charms and I am so excited about them!

I love summer.  I have the best memories of summer growing up.  We always went to the beach with family and the days at home just seemed endless. 

The summer seemed longer too!  We didn't have as many breaks and holidays that the school calendar does today so we actually had more days in number for summer break than there are today.

We lived in a big subdivision and had a lot of friends.  We would go from house to house, ride our bikes everywhere, and didn't go in until it was dark or we heard our mom call us.  And, I don't mean texting or on the mobile phone, she actually stood outside and yelled for us!

Things are different today and I can't help but be sad that kids today don't get to experience the kind of summer we had years ago. The benefit is that years ago you missed your classmates that didn't live near you or maybe took a trip while today's kids can keep in touch through phones and social media.

We had a creek where we lived growing up and I stayed in it during the summer.  I think back now at the poisonous snakes we saw and how it could have been so dangerous, but it was just always fun. Another thing I loved was catching lightning bugs.  We would put holes in the lid of mason jars and catch them for our own, personal night light.  Just watching them fly around was so pretty.  Some nights it seemed to take forever to get dark so they would be seen.

Lightning bugs, or fireflies, use their glow as communication with one another.  Specifically, the male can let the female know he's interested and she can answer back.  They can also synchronize their lighting up.  Not all fireflies glow, though.  In the west, specifically California, there are species that don't have a lit bottom.  In some places, Southeast Asia and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, they light up at the same time repeatedly all night long.  Also, they are actually beetles not flies.

I am not alone enjoying seeing these little shimmers of summer entertainment.  I think of the song we used to sing in children's choir when I was young and my grandmother helped lead the children's choir.  We would sing the song, "This Little Light of Mine."  I still love the song.

Lightning bugs set themselves apart from annoying summer insects because we look forward to seeing them!  They fly around like a free spirit spreading a sense of wonder.  We bottle them up to keep that beauty for ourselves, but it is really selfish because they lose their light sooner when captured.  We should really appreciate them for what they are...beautiful, magical, and so worth the wait for sundown.

In the spirit of my love of summer and lightning bugs and the song, "This Little Light of Mine," I designed and had these custom charms made for kids and kids at heart to enjoy.

The words to "This Little Light of Mine" are below.  It was written by Harry Dixon Loes around the 1920's, but became tied to Civil Rights leader Fannie Lou Hamer.  While she was detained by police after attempting to register to vote with others in her community, she began singing this song.

This Little Light Of Mine Hymn

This little light of mine, I'm gonna let it shine.
This little light of mine, I'm gonna let it shine, let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

Won't let Satan blow it out.
I'm gonna let it shine.
Won't let Satan blow it out.
I'm gonna let it shine, let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

Let it shine til Jesus comes.
I'm gonna let it shine.
Let it shine til Jesus comes.
I'm gonna let it shine, let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

Hide it under a bushel - NO!
I'm gonna let it shine.
Hide it under a bushel - NO!
I'm gonna let it shine, Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

Let it shine over the whole wide world,
I'm gonna let it shine.
Let it shine over the whole wide world,
I'm gonna let it shine, let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

We all have our own special, unique "light" that God has placed in each of us and we should do whatever to keep that light shining bright.

I made these pretty little charms with the cross made of nails that is glow in the dark.  The Bible verse below the cross is John 8:12.

12 When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”

We are human and flawed.  We let people down and others let us down.  It is human nature.  God won't ever leave us or let us down.  What a great way to wear your faith, blend in with the lightning bugs, and be a "light" for all to see!

I am listing these in my shop.  I have the last charms I posted about, "Can I Get An Amen," with some listings in my Etsy shop. (Click here.)  My little dog, Mia, is doing much better, but it has been a crazy week staying right with her making sure she eats and doesn't do anything to hurt herself. I will get caught up soon!  I have two more charms in production and two more in revisions and another I am trying to get on paper!

What is your special "light" and what do you do to keep it shining?

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Soooooo, This Happened

Happy Saturday and Happy Mother's Day Weekend!

Yes, I said weekend, because I think we moms deserve more than one day.  In our family, we have a birthday week, so Mother's Day and Father's Day generally last longer than a day too.

We have two little maltipoos.  I love these little dogs so much.  We didn't have dogs when I grew up and when my kids were growing up.  Well, we had one dog for about a week.  A friend lived in an apartment and was looking for a home for it and after about a day I understood why.  It was a pretty dog and had the spunkiest personality.  She was excessively active.  We had her in our backyard and two of my kids were a little afraid of her because she was a mid sized dog and would jump on you.  I have been afraid of dogs all of my life and I wouldn't go out in the backyard because she would jump so we found her a much needed farm to go to. We did miss her. One day I heard someone come in.  I don't know how, but she opened the door.  We had water bottles in the garage and one day she got the top off of one without spilling any.  She was a wonder dog and deserved more room than she had ever had to run and play.  Her name was Memphis.  I loved her name!

So, after years of begging, I finally gave in to my daughter almost four years ago and we got Mia.  She is a little maltipoo and we got her when she was a few weeks old.  She was the runt of the litter and is still little.  I knew I wouldn't be scared of a small dog.  She has always had anxiety and didn't like being left alone so two years ago we got her a sister.  Maggie is also a maltipoo.  These are THE sweetest little dogs.  I work from home so they are always with me.  We have our routines from morning to bedtime.

My girls

Soon after we got Maggie.  She was supposed to be a tea cup but is now 8 pounds, which is bigger than Mia.

Mia loves to jump from my bed whenever anyone comes into the house.  The alarm dings when the door opens, but they don't need that.  They bark BEFORE someone comes in or even rings the doorbell!  It fascinates me, but I can't hear anything so it is really amazing to me what they can hear.

I have a chair and ottoman by the bed, but she likes to give me a heartattack and jump straight off the bed.  I don't hear before the beep of the door, so I am just sitting and she barks and jumps while I jump out of my skin each time.

The other day she jumped and I saw her back leg almost buckle under her.  She couldn't get up for a couple of attempts and I thought she broke her leg.  She never cried, would let us touch it, and it didn't look broken.  I mentioned the anxiety earlier.  We aren't bad people, we just didn't rush her to the vet because she starts shaking taking her to the car.  We thought she might be getting better.  She started to put a little weight on it, but after a couple of days we decided to take her because we didn't want her hurting and not know.

This poor little thing snapped her ACL and had damage to her miniscus.  I got my kids through childhood and sports, including high school football, but this poor girl did it right and had to have surgery this week.

Soooo, we are taking good care of her and doing exactly what the vet has told us to do.  I feel so bad for her.  The cone makes me feel claustrophobic just looking at her.  Maggie has a knee that clicks so it looks like this won't be a random thing for us.

Her leg feels so strange and looks so different where they shaved it.

These little dogs have sat with me after my surgeries, especially Mia, who has been around for three of them.

This is a picture of her after my lumbar fusion two years ago.  She sat right next to me ready to jump up if I got up.

Maggie is my little shadow. Mia likes to sit in the den with the kids, especially when they have friends over.  She loves Stratton's girlfriend, Courtney.  Maggie always finds me, though, and sits with me.  If she thinks I am following her and she looks back and doesn't see me, she will find me.

This is an older picture too, but everyone needs to be looked at like that!

The good thing is Sydney graduated last Friday night and doesn't have anything starting up for a little bit so we can both take care of her.  She was so busy this semester it is kind of nice having some girl time.  All four of us girls!

Me and Sydney after her graduation!  I am so proud of her for so many things!

Sydney with my mom and dad.  She's the oldest of the eleven grandchildren so she's always been a little special to them.

Stratton and his girlfriend and Sydney's sweet friends who went with us to see her graduate!  I love them!

I will be able to get some work done too having her around.  I have a new logo to share soon with some new charms and I am working on new pieces for summer.

A lot of good things are coming soon including my new shop that will be in addition to my Etsy shop.  I will have different options and price ranges reflecting those options.

Mia and Maggie are excited too!  (They sit and watch me work and look so interested.)  I know they are excited because they told me so.  I am teasing, but we really do have our own language and they just get me.

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Thankful Thursday #44

I am so thankful for so many things everyday.

I am thankful for my custom made charms.  I am thoroughly enjoying creating each one.  I do the artwork and design and work with great people to get the idea in my head onto a beautiful little charm.

I love making all of my jewelry pieces.  It's a business, but a creative outlet.  I have often said I only want to be successful if I send a positive Christian message and I hope that's what I do with these charms.

When I get a note of how much someone loves their charm or what a special meaning it has to them, it just is a great feeling.

I am so excited about the new ones I just got on Tuesday!  I have another design coming in on Monday and another at the end of the month and something really fun and unique for early June.  It's just in time for red, white, and blue and getting ready to celebrate July the 4th!

This is my new addition!

I think the retro theme is fun!  The white background is glitter.

I was born in '71 and I spent a lot of time with my aunt who was 14 when I was born.  I was influenced by very strong and independent women on both sides of my family.  This was an empowering time for women and I am thankful I soaked some of that up from the women in my family. I looked up to my aunt and I love a hippie look because I wanted to be just like her and that was the style of this decade.  I am so glad some of those looks are popular today.

I am adding these to my shop with Stainless Steel necklaces and leather necklaces.  The leather is genuine Indian leather with natural, lead free dye.  I have some really pretty colors of leather and they have a Sterling Silver lobster clasp and end cords.  I will be coming back and adding the links to the listings, but I wanted to share my new charm on this Thankful Thursday!

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Thankful Thursday #43

I am so thankful for so many things everyday.

I am thankful today is National Day of Prayer.  It seems like everyday is a national day for something. 


It is May 3rd and we have already had on May 1 National Mother Goose Day, May 2 was National Truffle Day and tomorrow is National Orange Juice Day.

Every day is a National something.

In 1952, during the Korean War, Reverend Billy Graham said:

     "What a thrilling, glorious thing it would be to see the leaders of our country today kneeling before Almighty God in prayer.  What a thrill would sweep this country.  What renewed hope and courage would grip the Americans at this hour of peril."

It's kind of ironic that he said this in a time of great stress in our country and we are still grieving his passing at another great time of stress in our country.  I can't think of a better way to show honor and respect than remembering him and his association to this day.

On April 17, 1952, President Harry S. Truman signed a bill proclaiming a National Day of Prayer must be declared by each president after him at the date of their choice.  In 1988, the law was amended making the first Thursday of May the National Day of Prayer.

I don't think anything brings people together like prayer.  When something bad happens and people come together in prayer there is a unity like no other.  It's a shame it usually takes a tragedy to bring that kind of unity.

I am so thankful to live in a place where I can be open about my beliefs.  I love making all of my jewelry, but the spiritual charms with my artwork is what makes me most proud and the most excited to create.  They come from the heart and from years of having a relationship with God and my memories from church.  There is such a feeling of peace when you put everything else to the side and pour your heart out to God.

This Bible verse is so appropriate for the day.

Ephesians 4:3
     Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.

I am working really hard on my new online store and I have two new charm designs coming in the first of next week.  I can't wait to see them and share them!  I have another design coming in at the end of the month and it is going to be really cool and different!  I will give two descriptions as a hint: transparent enamel and glitter!!!!!  We have been working on another design this week.  I have so many ideas in my head and we are working to get them on the charms!

I have a new logo in the works also.  I can't wait to share everything!

I will be posting new things soon, but I have some really pretty things still in my Etsy shop. (click here.)

Have a great National Day of Prayer!  Even if we share it with National Lumpy Rug Day and National Raspberry Popover Day.  Seriously, who thinks of these???

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Thankful Thursday #42

I am so thankful for so many things everyday.

When you have kids close together you think about when they are little and doing bottles and diapers at one time.  You don't think about having teenagers for years or teaching them to drive back to back.  You also have graduations (and college tuition!) that fall close together.

My youngest graduated from high school last year and my oldest graduates from college in a couple of weeks.

As they get older, they are less dependent on us and when you have had, in my case, three kids within 5 years of each other it seems like I enter phases and leave them at one time.

My kids all live at home and commute to the local university so I haven't had to deal with separation.  They all come and go and I can't keep up with their schedules, but at night we are all under one roof.

I know what is going to happen.  It will seem like they all leave at one time too.  But, I am not going to think about that today.  I am glad they still need me.  Just when I think they are grown, someone asks my help.

My daughter is getting ready for graduation and she had a photo shoot yesterday.  She has a friend who is a great photographer and she took some really cute photos with her cap and gown.  One of the fun things graduates from college do are they decorate their graduation cap.  There are some really fun ideas!  Sydney asked me to help her with her cap and this is what we did!

Someone in the house is always watching a Friends rerun!

She is getting ready to move into a new exciting chapter of her life.  I am moving into an exciting time too!  I have some new charms coming in and I absolutely CANNOT wait to see them!  I am constantly  adding to my collection.  We were working on a new design yesterday.  The company I use to make the charms has some really cool new options that are fun and will look different than you will find anywhere else.

I am also working with someone to get my online shop going.  I will still have my Etsy shop, but I am excited to branch out and have another shop.  We are coming up with great ideas and a new, refreshed look.

This is my girl.  I couldn't be more proud of her.  She has a heart of gold and the most fun personality.  This is from her photo shoot.

Mother's Day is coming up!  If you still need a gift, I have some really pretty things in my shop.

Click on the picture to go to my shop.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Thankful Thursday #41

I am so thankful for so many things everyday.

It finally feels like Spring here and the sun is out.  I have been very busy.  I have a festival this weekend and I am trying to get everything ready.

I love festivals.  It reminds me of carnivals, county fairs, and anything of that nature.  Fun games, sometimes rides, and there is always some kind of magic.

I am thankful for magic.  I think we all need that feeling of mystery and wonder.  I love a good card trick.  My dad has one that is so good.  It's a long story and the way the cards go along with it is amazing.  I need to get a video of him doing it.  When I do, I will have to post it.  It is the best trick.

I saw on the news about David Copperfield having to reveal his secret to a trick he has performed for years.  I know someone got hurt and I don't know the details enough to even have an opinion on it, but it does make me sad he has to give it away.

My family, and I mean family consisting of aunts uncles and cousins and grandparents, went to Las Vegas a few times.  On one of our trips, I was around 17 and we got tickets to see David Copperfield.  A few of us got there early to get seats and a young guy came to our table and asked if I wanted to be in the show.  That was a no brainer!

Copperfield asked a question in the audience and when I raised my hand like I was told to do, he picked me and I was given just a couple of simple instructions for on stage.  He levitated me. I have no idea how he did it.  It is a little bit of a blur.  I always said he hypnotized me with his gorgeous brown eyes!  After the show, everyone wanted to know how he did it, but I was just as amazed at everyone else.  And, I got to go home saying I was in a Las Vegas show!

I might need David Copperfield to help me finish getting ready for Saturday.  I have a lot of things ready, I just always feel like I need to have more.  I am excited about the new earrings and necklace cards I got.

I will post pictures after the festival Saturday!

Also, speaking of magic and things, I am working on a store here.  The computer is a big mystery to me, kind of like a magic trick, but slowly I am getting better at it!

I also have two new charms coming in!  One design will be perfect for summer nights and the other is really "groovy."  You will soon see what I mean!

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Saturday the 14th

There was a movie, Staurday the 14th,  when I was younger joking about what happens on the day after Friday the 13th.

I think everyone has a little bit of superstition in them. I know I do.  I don't like it, though.  I have such a strong faith and know there is no such thing as good and bad luck, but I fall into certain things almost as a habit.

I have my own quirks.  My dad has always had them.  His grandfather did too and he spent a lot of time with him and picked up some of them.  My dad is like me, he doesn't like it and tries not to give in to them, but sometimes we do things without thinking.

It's funny, though, that 13 happens to be my lucky number.  It's a long story, but I was in my high school beauty pageant and we drew numbers.  I was in the 9th grade and drew #13.  My really good friend was in 11th grade and sitting next to me.  She knew I didn't want that number and she swapped with me.  Neither of us did anything that year, but the next year, her senior year, she won the pageant.  The following year, my 11th grade year, I drew #13 again.  This time I decided to keep it.  Well, I won the pageant that year and my good friend who swapped with me before crowned me.  We were really good friends and I ended up being in her wedding a couple of years later.  My sister won the pageant three years later and my daughter won in 2012.  It is a big deal in our "little town."

My friend to the left as reigning queen the night I won and me to the right in white.

My sister the year she won.

My daughter in 2012.  The pageant had changed into a scholarship pageant over the years and involved a lot of service hours which she loved.  It definitely impacted her and why she went on to get a degree in psychology.  She graduates college next month!

She also won Miss Congeniality that night.

Some superstitions came about because people couldn't find explanations.  Black cats are associated with witches, spilling salt is bad luck.  Salt was a precious commodity in ancient societies and spilling it was a wasteful and careless act.  It was believed the devil stood behind the left shoulder waiting for a way in and spilling the salt was a kind of invitation.  Throwing the salt would go into the devil's eyes blinding him and taking away his power.  Not walking under a ladder and breaking a mirror are also more common superstitions.

I find the origin of some superstitions that have to do with brides very disturbing!  A fun part of a wedding reception is when the groom tosses the bride's garter.  This comes from ancient times when bridal gowns were considered blessed.  By the end of the night, a bride would have her clothes ripped from her by guests as they were all trying to get a piece of the blessed garments.  In medieval times, if an unmarried man got the garter it was believed it would ensure they would be next to find a beautiful and fertile wife.  This would lead to  the bride being mobbed as she stood at the altar!  With the church protesting, the tradition became the groom removing the garter and tossing it from a window to men below.

Wedding cakes in Roman times were made of nuts, wheat, fruit, and honey which were symbols of wealth and fertility.  The rather violent custom consisted of the cake being broken over the bride's head to ensure a fertile and prosperous future and the guests would all fight to pick up the crumbs for good luck. In keeping with this today, everyone has a piece of cake and even pieces are taken home to those who weren't able to be there.

There are also some crazy, more uncommon ones.  I remember my grandfather giving me a set of knives one time, but made me give him a penny for them. Giving someone something with a blade like knives or scissors can  possibly sever a relationship so you give a coin in return.  Unless you don't like someone, then maybe I have just given you a great gift idea for them!

Don't go home after a funeral.  It might result in a spirit following you home.  In Lithuania, it is forbidden to whistle indoors because it is believed to summon demons.  A German superstition comes from Greek believing if you cheers with water you are wishing death upon the people you are drinking with.  Ok, I don't want credit for that one if you use it! Haha!  A Japanese superstition is to avoid sleeping with your head to the North because that is the way the dead are laid to rest.  It is the same in Africa for the same reason, but avoiding laying your head to the west.

In Britain, it's bad luck to put your shoes on the table.  Years ago, placing someone's shoes on a table was a way of letting their family know they had passed on.  Today, it is just gross and bad manners.

Itchy palms?  In Turkey if your right hand itches you are supposed to come into money, but if it's the left you are to lose money.  In France, stepping in dog poop is good luck if it's the left foot, but bad luck if it's the right.  And, I don't care where you are, please don't put those shoes on the table!

According to an Italian superstition if an owl ends up in your house, it means a family death.  My family has always heard this, but about birds in general getting in the house.  I used to live in a house down the street before we moved into my brother's house a couple of years ago.  For about 4 years in a row in the old house during Spring, I had mourning doves build a nest and I don't know if it was the same mama and daddy bird, but we would get three rounds of babies.  It was fun to watch.  They had their nest on a covered porch and my dad said that might still be considered part of the house but I had to let them do what they were supposed to.

And, I don't know if we need to be mad at all of you knitters, but an Iceland belief is if you knit outside the house it will prolong Winter and keep the frigid temps.  Ok, I am not sure about this one.  We are talking about ICELAND and how many people do anything outside there??!!!

It is really eerie if Friday the 13th happens around Halloween.  I love Halloween anyway.  This year the good thing about having the 13th of April on a Friday means that the 15th falls on a Sunday giving extra time for taxes.  That's good luck however you look at it!

Thinking about superstitions, I refreshed my Sugar Skull earrings in my shop.  I had them listed before Halloween, but with Cinco de Mayo coming up they would be perfect!  I added one more pair to the listing.

Aqua Blue Green Czech Glass Sugar Skull Sterling Silver Earrings

Beige and Copper Czech Glass Sugar Skull Sterling Silver Earrings

Blue and Black Czech Glass Sugar Skull Sterling Silver Earrings