Saturday, March 22, 2014

Surgery, Dr. Visits and Exhaustion

Just over a week ago, my husband had shoulder surgery where part of the joint was replaced. Because of the preparation for the surgery, then the hospital time and now that he is home and will be 'one handed' for at least a month, my life has become a little 'hectic' and a whole lot busier.

I have been the one in the past for surgeries and hospital stays so I never realized how much time and care are required.  My appreciation for those in the health care profession has grown considerably in the last few days.  I also have come to the realization that trying to do almost anything one-handed is a tough task.  My husband has had a difficult time but he's healing well and very slowly gaining a little movement each day.

 Again during this intense period, I have discovered how relaxing and soothing a little jewelry making has become.  I even took a mini jewelry making kit to the hospital and did bead stringing while my husband slept. Got a nice necklace made too.

I am hoping to go back to the short 3-4 hour show that is at the local restaurant parking lot on Sunday afternoons  tomorrow afternoon if the husband is up to being left alone that long and the wind behaves a little. Springtime in El Paso is known for being both very windy and dusty.

I have been working on a wire wrap necklace that has many small components and still need to hammer the last few.  It is kind of a combination of links and jump rings which will be a little more masculine yet lightweight and delicate.  Of course, it is made of copper.

Thanks for reading my rambling and as Jeff Smith used to say "I bid you Peace".  Blessed be.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Hearts a'dangling.

This light dangling pair of earrings, made from copper wire of course, is the last creative project I've done lately.  I have a few things on my plate that are kind of blocking my creating thoughts.

My husband is having shoulder surgery on March 14 and since he NEVER HAS serious health issues, I (the family worrier) am concerned.  

In addition, I am in the planning stage of a return trip to Germany to visit family that I haven't seen for a long time.  Excitement and lots of nerves happening here.  Course I know all will work out the way it is supposed to, but I AM the family worrier!

Back to the earrings and better things.  I have been doing a lot of tutorial researching for jewelry making and finding some great new ideas for wire working.  I used some info from one of the new tuts and some ideas from my own creativity as I worked.  Used 20 gauge pure copper and hand formed most of the design, did a little wire wrapping and then some hammering to strengthen the wire.  The small red glass heart bead only seemed appropriate.

The earring went up on my facebook page and are for sale on my Etsy shop site:

Weekend plans are still up in the air.  Take up to 4 cats to the vet for shots or do a short 4 hour craft show on a parking lot in the sun and the wind.....

Any suggestions?   Later, Ya'll.

Monday, March 3, 2014

No weather cooperation last weekend.

I set up my crafts at a new location last weekend, both days, at a coffee house that has artists one weekend of the month.  This show was in a farming community in New Mexico.  The location was good, with lots of road access at a busy intersection, Other vendors who had interesting wares  were friendly and helpful. Just one problem.  We had non-stop gale like wind from about ll am till the event closed at 3 pm.  I had been warned that there might be some wind, but by the time I finally got home, I was exhausted from fighting to hang onto the canopy or chasing down necklaces that went flying off the table.  Course I was not alone in this singular dance, but felt silly all the same, and pretty disgusted with the  weather after a couple of hours.  Before the day turned 'ugly' (I really mean another word here) I had a good sale so I had hope that the day would get better.  But it did not.

The canopy  was taken down and placed at the back of my space along with the tables and the chair for Sunday's showing.  Heavy rain woke me up early Sunday morning about 5:15, along with 4 scared kittens racing back and forth down the hall of our home, making even more noise. Within 15 minutes, everyone was awake and getting up (and thinking some unpleasant even unfriendly thoughts about then) to find the coffee pot.

We sat back till the rain stopped about 8 am and the sun started drying off the areas so I quickly headed out to do a few pre-show chores then raced to New Mexico, a short 30+ miles away.

Not sure if I was just going to retrieve my canopy and tables, or go ahead and set up, I drove up about 10 minutes before the show was supposed to start.  Everyone else was there all set up with new vendors as well so I set up and prepared for sales.  What I got was more wind and only one tiny sale.  I did stay till the show ended, but I drove home really dejected.  I plan to go back and try the show again, but I will wait till the windy season here has calmed down some.

The real highlight of the entire weekend was that due to my exhaustion we went out to dinner Sunday evening, to a restaurant close by and had a wonderful Mexican food dinner and had and took the time to relax and enjoy each other's company.

Batteries recharging and now trying to figure out what new items to make for the next show.

Have a good one, Ya"ll.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Sold a little jewelry Sunday

I returned to the 'art market' that is in the parking lot of a nearby restaurant and mini mart on Sunday.  There were three other vendors attending.  Two were crafters and one family was selling girl scout cookies and puppies.  Both of which were a great drawing card for the others of us.  One of the puppies was sold and boxes of the cookies went fast.

I had been in limbo about setting up there all morning and then I finally decided to go.  It is only a couple of miles from my home and with no fee charged, I was not out any to try.  Glad I went.  This time I sold jewelry.  One of the necklaces I recently started making and two pair of earrings.  While I did not need an armored car to carry all that cash home, I sure felt better having those sales and making a little money.  I am so encouraged that I will be doing another show in New Mexico Saturday.  Just need to get help setting up the canopy, then I'm ready to sell, sell, sell.  Been busy making both jewelry and more cat sleeping rugs, as well as the catnip socks.  I'll keep you posted after Saturday or maybe Sunday if I get to go back there. Sunday depends on if I take all the cats to the shot clinic.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

First craft show in 15 months

Last weekend from the 14th thru the 16th, I was a vendor at a local winery art market.  It was an excellent venue for me to get my feet wet again.  The show was about 5 hours daily and inside with tables provided.

I took all my new wired beaded necklaces (my newly learned jewelry making craft) and all of my copper wire wrapped jewelry using mostly gemstone beads.

In addition, I took my crocheted cat beds and the Kat Nap mats that have had interest.

Happy to say I had a few sales that covered the cost of the entrance fee and a little more.  So, I guess I am back in the craft show market.  I am considering exhibiting at a pet fair this weekend (again inside ) trying to sell my cat beds, the Kat Nap mats and the catnip socks, which are already big sellers.  I stuffed 20 newborn infant socks today with batting and catnip. Just needs sewing of the top and they are all finished. I'm also crocheting more of the Kat Nap mats, but due to the pains in these tired hands, that can only be done for a few hours at a time.

Sunday I plan on returning to the new artist market that is only a couple of miles away at a local mini market and restaurant.  Great hours, Noon to 4:30 Sunday afternoons.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Good morning.  I will be working on my current necklace project of red Aventurine  and turquoise natural but polished stones.  Again it is copper wire wrapped with silver spacers.  The Aventurine are nuggets where the turquoise are flat oval beads.  A teardrop shaped stone (possibly turquoise) has been wrapped and will be front and center.   Final length should be around 21 inches with a toggle clasp. I consider this necklace medium weight. When conditions (meaning the kittens allow me to work) agree, I can usually complete a necklace in two mornings.  I try to work on important projects early in the morning when the 'furbabies' are resting after their morning exercises and breakfast.

Photo to follow after I finish (and locate my glasses).

Friday, January 17, 2014

I think I'm back.

Seems like a lifetime since I've posted anything here.  Life has been busy here at Fort Krag (as my husband calls our home).  Now that we are edging closer to the 70's life mark, we are slowing down and our bodies do not always do what the mind is ordering or even requesting.

As I posted years ago now, we have feral cats living next door.  Apparently there is the cat radio that streams when any kitten gets sick, all they need to do is cross into our yard and sound and appear as pitiful as possible.  Within hours, the kitten(s) will be warm, cleaned up, medicated, and fed.  As of this time, January of 2014,  I/we have rescued six kittens, losing only one.   Even though it has been an extremely successful and satisfying endeavor,  it has also been most difficult as I care pretty much 24/7 for each kitten rescued.  Which means I've nursed each one back to health, bottle fed both kitten formula and special meds for anywhere from snuffles to pneumonia then bronchitis.  This last fall we were gifted with 3 very sick kittens within two weeks.  They have all survived, but two have been to the vet twice and vaccinations are coming up soon.    

So with these last three babies, that makes nine feline children in our home.  That is more than a generous family pack so I have decided I can no longer care for the feral cats next door.  It will be a difficult decision for me as I love cats, but I cannot continue to take them in and care for babies.

Last year was kind of rough on me physically as I injured my shoulder lifting a canopy into my vehicle for a show so I was unable to attend any craft shows all season.   I did continue to create, lots of knitting and crocheting as I healed and attended physical therapy for months. Then in September I visited an old friend in Upstate New York for just over a week and we spent that entire week visiting great places and photographing. Even got to the Montreal Botanical Gardens for the Topiary show going on!  I shot almost 2000 images those few days and loved every minute as my friend and I used to attend photo workshops in Pennsylvania together and hadn't connected for 13 long years as each of our spouses had retired and we moved to different areas of the country.

Within the last couple of months, I have resumed my working with the copper wire and creating some new pieces of jewelry.  I have completed just over a dozen new works and will be doing a small show on February 1 to see how much interest my work gets and to see if I can still handle the work and stress involved in craft shows.

This copyrighted image is one of the images I took when we visited a wildlife rehab center.  The manager was a wonderful lady who took time from her very busy schedule to remove this owl from his cage so we could photograph him.  Gorgeous Bird.