Archives for December 2016

Ciao 2016

Ciao 2016 – it’s time to say good-bye

2016 – some memories


So, some good things happened in 2016

and some not so good things…

I really honed my soldering skills and am planning a great series of bracelets for 2017

I finished 3 great knitting projects that I’m really proud of 

and I’m working on a “BABY” blanket now

(Our first grandbaby will make his appearance in 2017)

Reconnected with several old friends…  so nice

Made some new friends at Bead Camp in Florida in March

Had a beautiful trip to Great Britain in the summer

and to upstate New York in the fall

Attended a tennis tournament in Cincinatti 

and reminisced in Dayton –  where we used to live

Learned the technique of colored pencils on metal – you’ll get see some in those bracelets I am planning

that course was at Bead and Button in Milwaukee last June

Had my heart broken

And am slowly learning to trust and love again

So thankful for a friend in Tucson for all of her support

And I couldn’t have made it without all my friends scattered all over the US and Canada – only an email or call away

Homer turned 13 – grateful he is spry and still thinks he’s a puppy at times

Learned a lot about myself

Writing this blog is making me happy although there are many posts that I chose not to publish this year

I am thankful for all of you who follow my blog

And for all the clients who have purchased some of my jewelry

As well as those who like to look….  Feedback is always appreciated

Lastly I am thankful for living in the Southwest

where every day brings inspiration for me and my art.

Now it’s time to look to next year and what it will bring


Ciao (hello) 2017

Stop by on the first to follow my goals for the new year


creating the desert in glass and metal



Time Machine

time machine

Time Machine and Time Travel

I originally wrote this back in October……….   decided to wait to publish it at the end of 2016

I sat here yesterday thinking about time travel

I think the word melancholy would describe my mood

sad, sorrowful, unhappy, desolate, mournful, lugubrious, gloomy, forlorn, despondent, dejected, depressed, downhearted, downcast, disconsolate, glum, miserable, wretched, dismal, morose, woeful, woebegone, doleful, joyless, heavy-hearted;

Ummmmm – definitely glum

ok – time travel

Find yourself a time machine

Hop in, enter a date and off you go.

I didn’t want to go to the future.

Yesterday all I wanted to do was go back in time..  to a happier place

To pick one moment where I was happy;

but in that moment perhaps did not realize or appreciate all I had and what it meant to me

But I couldn’t decide what day that should be.

I had all the rules ready

I couldn’t change anything

I couldn’t stay for more than that one day

And I couldn’t interact – just watch and absorb the happiness

Fill my soul with all that was precious and perhaps what I took for granted at the time

Or maybe look for the signs that I once missed

But I couldn’t decide on a day….




All things change; yes I know this

Life evolves

We adapt to all the little changes along the way and openly welcome many of them

But yesterday I looked around and found myself in a today without the warm comfort of people and places that had made me happy; made me confident and made me cherish life; people who knew me along the way

When did those changes happen and why did I never consider that they would represent something that would be missed?

Why didn’t I notice the changes along the way?  Mark the day so I would have the memory so clear in my mind it would give me comfort when I needed it.

So I could reach out and grasp what was dear and hold on

But during those minutes when change is happening we are unaware even blissful as we journey forward

So I don’t want to go back in time

I just need to let my heart remember all the wonderful things in the past

to recognize that part of the journey has ended

as I enter a new beginning

“New beginnings are often disguised as painful endings” – Lao Tzu

Perhaps the future will be better



Just some things that amuse me


cause (someone) to find something funny; entertain.
“he made faces to amuse her”
provide interesting and enjoyable occupation for (someone).
“the hotel has planned many activities to amuse its guests”
synonyms: entertain, make laugh, delight, divert, cheer (up), please, charm, tickle;


Spiculum – Shell Forming



The long tapered bronze form on this necklace is called a spiculum.   Spiculum comes from the Latin word spiculae, which means “a tapered hollow tube.” The beauty of using a spiculum in metalsmithing is that you can create considerable volume in a design that also packs considerable impact–but without the considerable weight or considerable cost in materials. Forming simple metal sheet into these stylistic tapered hollow tubes allows you to make a statement with your skill and craftsmanship, not how much you spent on the materials used in a piece.  It is time consuming, but I love the effect.  For earrings it is a great technique and I plan on making several shapes in the new year.

This spiculum is a hollow form using a technique called shell forming.   The word shell means the outer skin of any form. The shell form is never solid. It begins as a flat shape, but through the shell-structuring technique, it evolves into a three-dimensional object and finally into a hollow structure.  Although grounded in traditional silversmithing, it presents new ways of working with and thinking about form. Forming is primarily done using one resilient tool and one steel tool. When using a metal hammer one works on a wood or plastic stake and when using a metal stake a plastic or wood mallet is used. The resilience of the wood or plastic tool allows the metal to be stretched gently thus rapidly creating strong but fluid structures. 

This piece also contains one of my lampworked beads and turquoise beads.  A great piece for the southwest.

creating the desert in glass and metal




Year End – Decluttering

If you know me you know that I like organization and spend time each week planning with todo lists.  I find that staying organized helps my productivity.  But I am not immune to clutter, and at the end of the year I like to take some time to declutter the studio and my closet.  I find that if I do not tidy up I sometimes end up buying duplicates of tools or clothing that I already have just because I can’t find what I am looking for. (That happens with books all of the time)

So first of all I decided on decluttering my closet.  I have two closets actually.  The one in the guest room is for off season clothing.  I like to switch clothing in those closets twice a year.  So around Thanksgiving I switched some of the heavier clothing from the guest bedroom to my main closet and the t-shirts and linens went to the guest room.  Tucson does have a winter but there are warm days even in the winter so I don’t like to pack away off seasonal clothing.  Everything is hanging or on shelves for easy access in one closet or the other.  This year I really unloaded a lot of clothing.  I filled 4 huge trash bags for Goodwill and Veterans.  

I really enjoyed reading Marie Kondo’s book about the Japanese art of decluttering and organizing.  I highly recommend it.

The first step is to discard.  I take everything out of each closet and sort it – trying things on as I go.  After that I spent time organizing what was left – dresses together, sweaters and jackets together, and pants all together.  Plus they are grouped by color….  Amazing to find things that I had forgotten about.  And to really see what was missing or needed replacing.  I am also amazed by the fact that I can do with less if it is well organized.  So I am saving money too….  

The studio is next…….


Color of the Year for 2017


color of the year 2017

Color of the year for 2017

It was officially announced a few days ago that Pantone picked the color greenery as the official color for 2017.  After a polarizing presidential election, Pantone hopes that Greenery will encourage consumers to “immerse themselves in the physical beauty and inherent unity of the natural world” in an effort to heal and move forward.

I personally love this color and there are many colors of Italian and American glass in this spring green so that I can utilize it in my glass bead making.  But I also love this color as it pairs well with other colors.  I would pair it with purple so using amethysts in my jewelry is on my todo list.  But also a deep magenta or ruby will go nicely also.  I also think it pairs well with silver and copper – the metals that I like to use.  So I am very happy to be utilizing this color in my jewelry designs for 2017.

I think the color is a symbol of new beginnings.  And I am so looking forward to 2017 as a new beginning for my personal life – which had a bad hiccup in 2016.

Here is a pair of copper earrings with a small peridot – perfect start for 2017

color of 2017

creating the desert in glass and metal


Walking For Exercise

Last February I started a walking regimen to get myself in better shape.  I like to walk on the treadmill for about 30 minutes four times a week.  I start with a low incline and do a 15 minute mile.  The machine tells me that I am burning about 170 calories.  And I feel really good since I have implemented this routine.

Walking For Enjoyment

On Sundays my husband and I and our dog Homer like to take a longer leisure walk.  Now that it’s winter it is sometimes dark in the morning when we start out.  The bonus is seeing the sunrise over the mountains by our house. Awesome!

walking at sunrise

Definitely inspiration!

creating the desert in glass and metal

My Mother – Remembering

Happy Birthday

My Mother was born on December 11th so on Sunday she would have been 90.  So I wanted to share some pictures and thoughts about her.

Her Life

She met my Dad when she was just 18 years old,  They used to like to go down to New York City – nightclubbing.


She was so glamorous!


I love this photo taken on her wedding day


They were married for just over 50 years.  When my Dad passed we had my Mom come live with us.


I was an only child and it was really tough taking care of her as she aged.  Eventually she went into an assisted living.


Her name was Marion



Music in the studio

Listening to Music in the Studio

I like to listen to music when I am working in my studio even though while I am making glass beads the ventilation system tends to drown it out. So one day I decided not to turn the ventilation on because I wanted to hear the music…. not a good thing! but that’s another story…  Then a dear friend said ear buds….  duh.  Now I am always immersed in music while I create


Anyway, while in Sante Fe last year I had the opportunity to hear someone play a Native American flute and I was hooked.

The history of this flute is vague, but it’s main appeal to me is the soulful, haunting, and emotional sound. I found an artist that I particularly like; and I think his music has really inspired a lot of my new designs which I will be showing you all over the next few months. Check out Scott August and his music.  Let me know what you think.

creating the desert in glass and metal