Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Bad blogger! & end of the year update :)

So, I have decided that I am just not a good blogger! And those of you who pop in to check my blog probably agree. Perhaps I put a bit too much pressure on myself. I want to share what's going on with me.....the "me" that is an artist. I hope to share stories of inspiration and creativity o' plenty, but the "me" that is a business owner is so damn busy that the "me" that is an artist is sitting on the back burner toasting her bunz.

Most of you check in to see how my business and kids are growing....well, let's start there. My business,, is, well how shall we put this, simply put, it's amazing! We have grown immensely. The last few months have sure taught us some lessons. Our sales and customer outreach is bigger than we thought and are trying our darnest to keep up :) My staff here, is top notch. I have the most talented and dedicated team, and I am soooooo grateful!

As for my kids, don't get me started. Oh my god, they are so great and fun and sweet and kind! Between the 2 of them, 3 teeth have been lost in the last month. Izzy is 9 now and Lucy will be 7 on the 21st of this month (my Solstice baby....bringing the light) We went to the doc yesterday and my poor Izzy, she is so tall. I love it (I was super tall at her age too) but she HATES it. She is off the charts tall, not like a little over the 90th percentile off the charts, like way off the charts. I am sure it will come in handy somehow (volleyball? bullying boys?). Anyhow, there is a slight update for ya :)

As far as "me" the artist, I got a lot to tackle in the next few weeks. I will be submitting 2 chapters for a wirework book Denise Peck is writing, proofing the final layout of my book (yeah!), reorganizing my office (I will post a before and after) and then it's time to start crankin' out some jewelry. I need to come up with 2 new for Hooked On Wire 2010 and one for a Wirework Retreat I will be teaching at in Laguna, CA in Oct (more info to follow....this is gonna be a BLAST!). Oh and tomorrow is Beaducation's end of the year party....oh yeah, I will post photos of that fer sure. We have all worked very hard, it's time to blow it out, the Champagne is chilled, the limo is booked!!!

So, it's time to get my bunz off the burner, clean this office, light a few candles (I always work with a candle lit....mmmmmm) and let the creativity flow......wish me luck :)

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Facebook anyone?

Did you know that Beaducation has a Facebook page? We post info about products, upcoming events, sales and most importantly, what we have for lunch. We also occasionally post discounts for only our Facebook fans.
Come join us :)

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Hooked On Wire 2009

I just returned from teaching at the Hooked On Wire Retreat. What a blast! The students were great, the projects were great, the hotel was great....pretty great time! I will be taking pictures this week of my demo samples. But for now, here is one.

One of the perks of this retreat is all the project are brand new. So as instructors, we have to come up with a new project and then teach it to 30-48 people without having ever taught it.....hummmm, sometimes that doesn't go so well. But this weekend, it went great. As I demo'ed I came up with more and more ideas. The room was buzzing with creativity.

I wil be teaching the bracelet at Bead Fest Santa Fe at the end of March, and as a 7 hour workshop at the Bead&Button Show in the beginning of June. I will also be teaching this pendant (this exact pendant in this picture) at the Bead&Button Show as a 3 hour class.

Thanks to all the lovely ladies (and lovely David!) who came to the retreat this year. I hope you had as much fun as I did :)

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Felt like sooooo long ago?

There are chapters in my life where the years just kinda come and go. Yeah, there is always good news and bad news and kids growing and changing and such but all in all, pretty smooth sailing. Well today I realized that it has been exactly one year since my first Thyroid surgery and it has me reflecting on the passing of this year. This has not been an easy year. Was it really just a year ago? Feels like longer. I am not writing here to blab about the details but more to explore this whole thing called time.

How often do you recall an event in the past and say "man, that seems like ages ago" or "seems like just yesterday"? So here's my question; if there are positive or negative feelings associated with an event, do those feelings define the perceived passage of time? My first surgery, and all the hell that came with it, seems like waaaaay longer than a year ago. My wedding feels like "just yesterday" but maybe that is because it was a blast and I wish I was still there. I certainly don't feel like I can possibly have a 6.5 and 9 year old. Seems like their births and toddler hoods truly were just yesterday. Watching my step dad take his last breath seems like forever ago, yet it was just in March. Maybe the bad and yucky things feel like forever ago, and the positive things feel more recent.

Hummm, not sure if I am coming up with a proper theory here. I will sit on it.

This is the kinda stuff that keeps me up at night pondering. I tend to get hung up on the stuff that has no explanation, go figure!


I love bowling!
My kids love it too!
Good fun for the whole damn fam!

New art....i'm a big girl now

We recently bought a new painting. It is the most expensive piece of art I have ever bought and well, that kinda makes me feel like a grown up.

My daughter Izzy attends an art class on Saturdays to learn to paint oil on canvas. This piece was painted by her amazing art teacher, Bernard Beneito. He is this wonderful gentleman from France who is highly influenced by various cultures, Blues Music and New Orleans. This painting depicts the beloved Marianne, a national emblem of France, relaxing over Paris. This is one of Bernards very favorite pieces and I am quite proud to have it on my wall.

Izzy is on her 12th painting. Bernard has been trying to push her to paint people. He knows she is ready but she has been reluctant. He finally got through to her a few weeks ago and she is 3 weeks into this painting. Here she is working on her 2nd layer. I am gonna need a bigger house soon with more wall space!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Viva la Mexico

This shot is from a recent trip to Mexico. The pose, the colors, the sassy suit....I love it!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

I can feel's gonna explode....

Do you ever get that feeling that if you don't sit in your studio and make some jewelry (or create whatever it is that floats your boat) you are going to explode? I have that feeling right now....I have been so inspired lately and it's gotta squirgle (a Lucy word) it's way on out soon. When I am done writing this book (by the end of next week) I have a serious hot date with my studio. I need a nice chunk of alone time with a mess o' wire and some pliers.

What's with this recent surge of inspiration? Is it the simple things in life, or is it the big "in your face" stuff? Is it the weather, is it the Renegade Craft fair I went to last weekend, is it Izzy's messy hair, is it Paul's guitar, is it the music in the park, is it my new shoes, is it the smile on my moms face, is it my bike rides, is it the plethora of apricots in my yard or the nearly ripe tomatoes? Perhaps it's a pinch of each, combined and stirred together. Is it from a general feeling, or an exposure to beauty and color.....can ya pin it down? Can ya put a finger on what lights that fire? I hope not, because if you can clearly define it, you will try too hard to chase it or artificially recreate it. I am happy to have it pop in when it wants, when it finds a clear and appropriate passage. And when it is absent I will wait, and be, and observe. Will it wait for me?

It sure would be nice, though, if inspiration would strike when you aren't completely busy with something else....I know, I know, don't push it, be still. In fact, I will stop questioning it and just be grateful ;)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

oh so sad....

'tis with an ungloved hand that I wipe a tear for Michael and Farrah. Anyone who knows me, knows that 2 of my favorite things ever are Michael Jackson and Charlie's Angels. I will have to listen to my Thriller vinyl while sifting through my Charlies Angels trading cards, which are kept in my Charlie's Angels lunch box.
What a loss!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Father's Day Picnic at the New Guinea Sculpture Garden on Stanford Campus

We picnicked (that sounds so civilized) at the super cool New Guinea Sculpture garden today. It is such a beautiful and magical little nook of Stanford University campus. There are a lot of little spots like this on campus. Learn more about this permanent sculpture garden here.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

A few things I love about living in Redwood City

  • The weather. After all, Redwood City is "climate best by government test", just ask us.
  • The fact that a 10 minute drive will take you to amazing hiking trails.
  • The fact that a 40 minute drive will take you to a camp site that makes you feel like you are in Tahoe.
  • A 3.5 hour drive will take you to Tahoe.
  • A 12 minute drive will take you to Anthropologie.
  • A 6 minute bike ride will take you to Whole Foods.
  • A 7 minute walk will take you Peets Coffee.
  • A 30 minute drive North or South will take you to an International Airport to take you anywhere.
  • San Francisco is oh so close which means easy train or bart access to The Fillmore, China Town, North Beach and the Ball Park.
  • Today on my way to my chiropractors office in Portola Valley, I had to stop to let 2 deer and 4 baby deer get out of the street.
  • There were way more Obama signs than McCain signs....well at least in Redwood City.
  • I can walk my kids to school.
  • Soon my kids can walk themselves to school....hallelujah!
  • You get to say things like "I live in The Wood".
  • My mom lives 2 towns south.
  • The trees are big....and old.
  • and the weather, again.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Working on my book....really, I am working not fooling around, really.

Yes, it's Saturday and I am at my office working on my book (ok, and fooling around). A nice chunk of the book is due next week and I am making good progress. The day started out great as I rode my new bike to work. It took me 12 minutes to ride here....not bad. I have driven this route 4 times a day for the last 2 years but on a bike you see all new things. What a great ride. And a big thank you to the fairly middle aged, bearded hippie gentleman who gave me a whistle, big thumbs up and a "nice bike" this morning. Who needs coffee when you can start your day with that :)

Now I continue on. The live Bonoroo webcast is playing in the background...Gov't Mule. Super good! Warren Haynes rocks. I don't know how that brotha can tour with 3 bands at once (Allman Brothers, The Dead and Gov't Mule) .... impressive.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Barf Bag Designs

There was a time where I thought I should change my business name to "Barf Bag Designs" (sexy huh?). See, for a while, the only time I came up with new designs was when flying in an airplane. Up in the clouds, there are no computers (well mine is usually in the overhead), no phones, no TVs and often times I am alone. All you can do is listen to music and look out the window (window, not aisle please). I find it to be the most relaxing and inspirational spot to ponder. So as I ponder, I need something to write on....oh look, it's a barf bag. At some point, I started using barf bags as my canvas of choice. They are perfect. I have been designing on barf bags for about 8 years. On a recent trip, my mom saw me doodling on a barf bag and she offered me a piece of paper. I declined.

Earlier today, I was searching for something and came across some barf bags with sketches all over them. There is some good things on there!

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Bead and Button 2009...over and done

We just completed the Bead and Button Show. Holy moly we had fun! Our triple booth was slam packed with tools, kits, wire, donuts and customers!
This year (pretty much from May 31st 2008-May 31st 2009) was tough and basically horrible (only personally, business has been great!). Not only did I have my "little" health issue, but I lost my step dad and a week or so before I left to the B&B Show, one of my closest friends (who is the husband of my best friend) died from a 3 year battle with Lung Cancer (40 years old, never smoked). So I have been a bit down lately and the show could not have come at a better time. Thanks to all my good pals who brought me back to life this week. What a blast!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


What happened to the month of April.....has anyone seen my month of April because it seems to have passed completely with out me noticing or acknowledging it!!!!
April....where are you?????

Bead Dreams 2009

Well, I was recently inspired to do a competition pieces. This rarely happens, mainly because I don't have time to work on a big piece and often because I am not inspired. But this piece came to me and it resulted in my project for Hooked On Wire, and a piece for the Bead Dreams competition at the 2009 Bead&Button Show. I was accepted so it will be on display at the show if you want to check it out. Hope ya like it :)

Thursday, March 26, 2009

The end of a journey.....

As some of you know, I have cut my teaching schedule way back this year so I could spend as much time as possible with my Step Father who was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer last May. Last night he passed away with 5 of us kids, his wife and his mother in law holding each other and holding him. We were there for 4 days with him as his body slowed down. Being there and watching him take his last breaths was the hardest and most powerful thing I have ever been a part of. He was my step father for 29 years. He raised me, guided me, loved me unconditionally, coached my first volleyball team, bought me my first (of many) pandas and loved my daughters as if they were the most valuable things on this planet.

We will miss him so much. Now we pick up the pieces, support my mom and live life to the fullest as he would want us to (oh and eat a lot of chocolate because according to him, life is chocolate).

Deep breath, life goes on, live it well......

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Hummingbird Girl

I am hiding in my moms house right now because I just took the test dose of Radioactive Iodine and need to be away from people (especially small blonde girls with blue eyes) for the afternoon and evening. After I took the pill, I got in my car to drive home and as I turned on the radio the very first words that came out were the Police singing "don't stand, don't stand so, don't stand so close to me". I laughed until I almost cried. Yep, don't stand close to me!

My friend Mary, who is one of the funniest people I know, wrote to me this afternoon and here is what she said

"I think the fact that you're "RADIOACTIVE" is WAY cool. You're like a superhero--radioactive then bitten by hummingbird or something--to become HummingbirdGirl! You can have a cute little superhero outfit--with tights and wings and a big HG on the chest of your leotard. (Make sure your outfit includes some glitter, too). Children beaten up by bullies will cry, "Save me, Hummingbird Girl!!" And you will swoop down and flutter violently. Store clerks will yell for you and you'll fly in the face of robbers, confusing them with your rapid wings and making them drop their booty of cash and condoms. And, like Superman, you have a weakness. You are strong and brave--but must avoid clean glass windows and doors, for fear that you may hurl yourself into them unknowingly. "

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Drip drop.....

It is rainin' but good up here! That is a good thing because boy do we need some water. And our lovely grapes down in San Luis Obispo need some H2O! I remember one drought-ey year my dad gave us all raisins for Christmas because our crop wasn't' so good. So we have been doing a rain dance and now it is comin' down :)

My office is buzzin' with preparations for Bead Fest Sante Fe and the Bead&Button Show. I am a total last minute person so we are all pretending that the Bead&Button Show is in April this year (which it isn't but don't tell me that!). The class registration for B&B is's not too late to squeeze in a few classes. I know things are tight this year, but this show is a blast. Well all the shows are a blast. If you can sneak out to a bead show, you won't regret it.

I am feeling really good these days. We found out that I am anemic (joy) and the addition of Iron to my many daily pills, has made a HUGE difference....woohoo. In a week I will get my Radioactive Iodine treatment. As my doctor says, surgery is the cure/treatement for Thyroid Cancer but this Iodine treatment is just a little extra "kick it while it's down". Thyroid cells are very unique in that they live off of iodine. So I have been on a low iodine diet (no dairy, nothing from the sea, no resturauts, no store bought bread, no fun!) to starve my body of iodine. Then in a week, I will take a pill of radioactive iodine. All the remaining Thyroid cells in my body will be like "oh, Iodine, gimme gimme!" and they will suck it up and get zapped....pretty cool huh? But I can't be around any people for 3 days, because I will be totally radioactive. Yikes, if it will harm them, imagine what it is going to do to me, swimming around in my body. I will power through and this will give me 3 quite days (hauled up in one of my mom's extra bedrooms) to finally get cranking on my book.

Yes I AM WRITING A BOOK...woohoo. It will be published by Interweave and is about Making Stamped Metal jewelry. The book will cover stamping, sawing, riveting, dapping and more. It's gonna be a good one.....

Happy rainy day to you.....